Print book sales fell almost 20% last week

Last year around this time, a new Dav Pilkey title hit the shelves and Easter was the following week. This year, that is also not the case, and as a result, unit sales of print books fell 19.8% last week compared to the week ended March 27, 2021, in outlets that are the responsibility of NPD BookScan.

Pilkey’s Dog Man: Mothering Heights, sold over 236,000 copies when it was released last year, easily making it the best-selling book of the week a year ago. In the absence of a similar performance this year, sales of children’s fiction fell 29.1% last week. Last week, Alice Schertle The spring of the little blue truck was the #1 seller in the category, selling just 19,000 copies.

A few Easter books started gaining momentum last week, but weren’t selling as much as they did a year ago. by Marilyn Sadler It’s not easy being a bunny and How to Catch the Easter Bunny by Adam Wallace took second and third place in the category list last year, selling around 17,000 and 16,000 copies respectively.

Young adult fiction sales fell 15.5% from a week ago, when They both die in the end by Adam Silvera was taking steam from TikTok and selling over 17,000 copies. Last week, A Good Girl’s Killing Guide by Holly Jackson was #1, selling over 9,000 copies.

Unit sales fell 29.1% in the children’s non-fiction category. Easter-related subcategories were the most affected, with sales down 37.1% in the games/activities/hobbies category and 35.8% in the holidays/festivals/religion segment.

Sales in the adult non-fiction segment fell 17.1% last week due to the overall strength of the roster in 2021. James Clear’s roster headline, Atomic Habits, topped the category last week, selling over 22,000 copies. One year ago, Eat better, feel better by Giada DeLaurentis was the bestseller with nearly 21,000 copies.

Once again, adult fiction was the only category to see an increase in sales compared to 2021 with units up 1.2%. It was an old favorite that led the increase: Where the Crawdads sing by Delia Owens was No. 1 in the category, selling over 51,000 copies. The highest ranked new book in the category list was by Janet Evanovich recovery agent, which sold over 22,000 copies.

With one week longer in BookScan’s first quarter, print unit sales were down 7.4% from a year ago.