Opening week of the 2004 holiday season was considerably lower in sales of hardcover fiction, a drop of 29.5% over the same time last year, and ahead by 8.5% over nonfiction hardcover. The nonfiction unit numbers are the highest they’ve been for the past five years. These figures are based on sales of the top five hardcover fiction and nonfiction books at the three national chains—Barnes & Noble, Borders and Waldenbooks. The two books that racked up the highest-ever holiday fiction sales last year—The Da Vinci Code and The Five People You Meet in Heaven—are still among the top five fiction sellers a year later, but with lower unit sales. The increase in nonfiction is due mostly to higher unit sales for nonfiction top sellers at Waldenbooks.
Volume 251 Issue 49 12/06/2004