Spring Book Sales Surge in Ten Categories

July 15, 2005
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July 15-31, 2005 Edition

Spring Book

Sales Surge

in Ten Categories

New York, NY/06/06/2005—Net domestic book sales for May surged in ten categories tracked by the Association of American Publishers (AAP). Adult and children’s hardcover and paperback categories led the spring sales surge.

Sales in adult hardcover category grew an impressive 34.2 percent in May, with sales of $121.4 million. This category has grown 10.7 percent in 2005. Adult paperback sales also made gains in May of 18.3 percent (sales totaled $83.7 million). Sales for this category have grown 7.8 percent over last year’s sales. The adult mass market category gained 9.5 percent in May. Sales totaled $55.3 million for this category, which is subsequently down only 0.4 percent for the year.

The children’s and young adult hardcover category posted an incredible 21.2 percent gain in May ($34.9 million). This category has had a banner spring and maintains a 34.8 percent growth figure for the year. The children’s and young adult paperback publishing sales also grew; this category realized a 7.7 percent growth figure for May with sales totaling $39.0 million. This category is up 2.4 percent for the year.

Audio book sales witnessed a 46.7 percent growth in sales in the lead-up to the summer travel season ($17.2 million); year to date sales are 20.2 percent greater than last year’s. E-books sales grew, a 33.4 percent gain was realized ($1.1 million); this rapidly expanding category is up 38.3 percent for the year. Religious book publishing sales lost 20.7 percent in May ($17.2 million); sales are resultantly down by 4.7 percent for the year.

Publishing sales of university press hardcover books suffered a 3.4 percent loss in May (sales totaled $8.9 million). This category has lost 13.7 percent in 2005. Sales in the university press paperback category lost 14.0 percent in May (sales totaled $15.3 million); this category maintains a positive growth figure of 6.0 percent for the year. Sales in the professional and scholarly category increased 4.7 percent in May, with sales of $47.1 million; sales in this category are down 0.6 percent for the year. Sales of ‘other’ types of books witnessed a gain of 57.2 percent in May (totaling $1.5 million), and the year to date figure is regaining ground and narrowing the sales deficit in 2005 to 10.9 percent for this catchall category.

Higher education publishing sales were 29.6 percent greater in May ($96.1 million); this category has witnessed a year to date net gain of 5.4 percent. Finally, the net el-hi (elementary/high school) basal and supplemental K-12 category lost 3.9 percent in May, with sales of $329.7 million, allowing for a 4.1 percent year to date growth figure.

The Association of American Publishers is the principal trade association for the U.S. book publishing industry with over 300 members, comprising most of the major commercial book publishers in the United States, as well as smaller and medium-sized houses, non-profit publishers, university presses and scholarly societies.

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