The shift in Easter book buying shifted in favor of the publishing industry last week (Easter was April 4 last year, compared to April 17 this year), resulting in a 10.2% increase in unit sales of printed books during the week ended April 10. 2021.
The children’s category led the rise, with fiction sales up 38.2% and non-fiction sales up 26.7%. All subcategories saw substantial gains more than a year ago in outlets that report to NPD BookScan. In fiction, sales jumped 138% in the holiday/festival/religion sub-category and 58.6% in the concept genre. The No. 1 title in the category was that of Tui T. Sutherland The Flames of Hope (Wings of Fire, Book 15), which sold just under 80,000 copies in its first week on sale. The rest of the top 10 titles had an Easter bent, including Adam Wallace’s How to Catch the Easter Bunny, which sold nearly 45,000 copies, placing it in second place on the category list.
Within children’s non-fiction, the holiday/festival/religion subcategory saw the strongest growth, with sales up 83%. The games/activities/hobbies segment posted an increase of 53.5%. I color myself differently by Colin Kaepernick took the top spot in the category, selling nearly 9,000 copies in its first week on sale.
Adult fiction sales increased 8.3% from 2021. Two new graphic novels published by Viz Media led the sales increase. The chainsaw man, volume 10 by Tatsuki Fujimoto was No. 1, selling nearly 44,000 copies, while Gege Akutami Jujutsu Kaisen, volume 15 was in second place on the category list, selling over 30,000 copies. Emily St. John Mandel’s sea of tranquility sold over 20,000 copies in its first week, placing it in seventh place on the category list.
Adult non-fiction sales fell 4.3% during the week. A year ago, Amanda Gorman’s The hill we climb sold over 42,000 copies in its second week on sale. Last week, the No. 1 headline was Bible Mothers and Daughters Speak by Shannon Bream, which sold nearly 31,000 copies.
Sales of children’s fiction fell by 8.5% over the week. A Good Girl’s Killing Guide by Holly Jackson was the bestseller in the category with nearly 10,000 copies.
With last week’s sales surge, year-to-date sales were down 7.7% from 2021. During the week ended April 2, 2022, sales were down 8.9 %.