Children are reading in record numbers in the last decade, which has propelled billion dollar properties such as Harry Potter, Percy Jackson, Twilight, Hunger Games, Diary of a Wimpy Kid. Not only have these titles done staggering well but it has promoted the success of books with similar subjects and themes and are benefiting from each other’s successes. Over the course of the last two years John Green and Veronica Roth are the highest-selling authors; juvenile fiction is performing so amazingly that 17 of the 20 overall bestsellers in the US during 2014 were books for children.
Nielsen hosted the first annual Children’s Book Summit in Manhattan and produced research for over a four year period. They produced research that the children’s book market has increased 44% in the last decade and 67% of teens read for pleasure. Ironically, although tablet adoption has increased exponentially, 50% still prefer print books over eBooks.
An affecting picture book for older children, well-received in hardback last year, and now in paperback.
The book is narrated by a boy [see comment!] growing up in a mean, hard and ugly city. He lives by stealing, usually pickpocketing on crowded streets. Then one night he tries to snatch a old woman’s handbag but she hangs on tight and will not let go until he has made a promise to “plant them”. He is expecting the fat bag to be full of coins. But when he opens it he finds only acorns. “I stared at them, so green, so perfect and so many, and understood The Promise I had made. I held a forest in my arms, and my heart was changed.”
He keeps his promise and travels from city to city, planting the acorns. Slowly they flourish and the cities become lively, colourful places once again.
Finally, on arriving in a new city where his planting was yet to start, “in a lonely alley, a young thief fought me for my sack of acorns. I smiled and made the old bargain, knowing how a heart can change, knowing that my planting will go on…”
Not a particularly seasonal book, but foll of genuine Christmas spirit. A book author, illustrator and publisher can be proud of.
via The Promise.
Consumer e-book sales rose 10% in the first quarter of 2014, according to the Publishers Association, with strong performances from children’s e-books, and digital downloads of audio titles.
The Bookseller reports that the children’s book market continues to outpace other publishing sectors, with a staggered drift to digital and strong growth in brands the prime drivers.
Ahead of the Bologna Book Fair (24th–27th March), analysis of Nielsen BookScan Top 5,000 data shows the children’s market in 2014 is up by just under a million units at this point compared to the first 11 weeks in 2013 (9.67 million copies versus 8.69 million last year), while value sales have risen £3.2m (or 8.1%) to £42.2m. Overall market data for January shows the sector up 14.3%.
This growth is mainly down to some new authors and properties, plus the continued strong performances of established superstars.
Egmont’s deal to publish the Minecraft tie-in books was the breakout move of late 2013, and continues to gather speed. The Official Redstone Handbook (99,475 units for £514,630) and The Official Beginner’s Handbook (89,945 for almost £474,479) are the two bestselling books of the year in volume and value terms.
But Jeff Kinney and David Walliams are also boosting the numbers. Kinney has shifted £1.8m so far in 2014, £500,000 up on 2013, while Walliams is level with his very strong start to 2013 (£1.37m in 2014; £1.4m in 2013).
While some publishers say that the young adult market was saturated, certain titles continue to sell well. Divergent author Veronica Roth’s sales are showing huge growth, up 1,096% at this point against 2013, and worth nearly £500,000, with the film of the first book in the series released in April.
Waterstones said children’s was a “big priority” in its store refurbishment programme; it plans to create more space for children’s books and related products in its stores. J