Book Sales in the UK Increased During 2020

It seems that lockdown may not have been all bad. In the UK, it is being reported that consumer book sales rose by 7% in 2020, which makes the earnings around €2.1bn.

Stephen Lotinga, who is the chief executive of the Publishers’ Association, commented on the rise in book sales. He said, “It’s clear that many people rediscovered their love of reading last year and that publishers were able to deliver entertaining and thought-provoking books that so many of us needed.”

In particular, the consumer market performed well as sales for fiction and non-fiction both increased by 16% and 4%, respectively. Some of the bestselling consumer titles from 2020 are The Boy, the Mole, the Fox and the Horse by Charlie Mackesy, Girl, Woman, Other by Bernardine Evaristo, Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens, and The Thursday Murder Club by Richard Osman.


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With schools being shut down due to the pandemic, that, unfortunately, saw a decrease in educational book sales. The sale of textbooks and word books were down by a fifth, but that didn’t seem to affect the academic publishing industry as a whole as total income rose by 3% at €3.3bn.

Taking into account consumer, academic and education titles, the total publishing sales in the UK increased by 2% in 2020 with total earnings coming in around €6.4bn.

Lotinga remarked, “With bookshops now able to reopen, and physical events returning, we are optimistic that people will soon be able to enjoy books together again.”

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