Hello internet!

So lots of things have been happening in the world lately, and I was curious to see how it might have been affecting the niches and trends in book sales. So I have decided to put that hat back on for a dip into the sea of information related to that side of the website. Or words to that effect. Basically, I have let my nosiness take over and I’m looking on the bestselling charts on Amazon again to work out what’s selling well and what isn’t.

Now, as always, this is for Amazon.co.uk, so if you are looking from a different country the numbers will likely be different and the specific writers and books will be different. However, I am willing to bet that a lot of the same niches and trends will be visible even across different countries. The links will also be going to Amazon.co.uk and if you use one of them then I will get a percentage of the money you spend as a thank you from the website.

One niche that is drawing a lot of attention is adult colouring books. (Did you see what I did there?) These are mostly colouring books focused on the idea of mindfulness and calm. In particular, there are a lot of books which feature swears and cursing in tandem with the de-stressing activity of colouring in pictures, or in the case of at least two books in the top fifty today, colouring in swears themselves. This is perhaps not a surprising niche to get a lot of popularity, given that many people are now faced with more stress and in some cases more time to fill. Not everyone of course, but we will come to that later. Books such as Cindy Elsharouni’s, Adult Colouring Book, is selling extremely well and is even managing to pull up an increase in the number of colouring pen and pencil sets that are being sold if the “Frequently Bought Together” section is any indication.

In connection to these best selling colouring books, there has also been a rise in the number of books that promote mental health or organisational tips. There are also several recipe and fitness books which are selling well, which all underlines the idea that with the lock downs that are keeping people at home people are finding new ways to fill that time, often by making self-improvement a priority. Of course, there is also the fact that with many people working from home or prevented from eating out that people are forced to find ways to augment their skills in this regard. This, therefore, explains the rise in organisational help books, as well as recipe books and fitness books. The mental health books are likely becoming more popular because this is a very stressful time for everyone, so more people are needing help. It is also likely being helped by the wider focus on good mental health that is being encouraged by many celebrities and influencers. A book series that seems to combine many of these elements are the Mrs Hinch books, by the eponymous Mrs Hinch, which give advice on cleaning and organisation, in a mindful and positive mental health style.

Another popular niche which does a lot to illustrate the issues currently occupying people’s lives, and one of the reasons why people may have even less free time than before the lock downs, is the rise in children’s educational books. Many of these books are aimed at very young ages, with the priority in many cases given for self study. This obviously will be useful for parents who are having to teach from home for the first time, but are unsure what to do or need additional support. Along with more general children’s books, books which might be for entertainment purposes more than educational ones, these are the niches which are proving most popular today. This suggests that this might be an ongoing issue for the length of the lock down and quarantine era, as people try to keep their children occupied and productive.

A very narrow niche that is proving popular are medical memoirs. This is again to do with the current medical emergency that the world is going through, people will be curious and want to know more, and so older books that proved popular in the past seem to be having an additional boost. There are also some fiction books which are coming in under this banner, though, the majority are memoirs like This is Going to Hurt, by Adam Kay.

Fiction, in general, is seeing something of a slump this week. Especially fiction for adults. However, this might be because other books are pushing ahead, rather than a drop in their sales. Books which have been popular for a time such as Where the Crawdads Sing, by Delia Owens are seeing a rise once more, perhaps because people are taking the chance to read them when they have previously lacked them. And there are also books which are seeing more attention due to them having recent adaptations or receiving awards, for example, Sally Rooney’s, Normal People, and Bernardine Evaristo’s, Girl, Woman, Other.

There is also, of course, Stephanie Meyer’s, Midnight Sun. This book was announced yesterday. It isn’t coming out until August and so it is still limited to pre-orders. And yet. If you don’t remember who Stephanie Meyer is then good luck to you over the next few months. The Twilight series and various spin off books, plus the movies, were a massive part of popular culture a decade ago. Now it appears Stephanie Meyer is back and already becoming a tent pole author of the summer. This book has an interesting history as it was originally leaked by unknown people in a very early form.  Meyer was understandably upset by this and felt discouraged from continuing with the book, so the first dozen or so chapters were posted onto her website. Apparently, she has felt re-inspired by the story and so has finished it at long last. There are vast amounts of people on the internet who are feeling very strongly about this. And there are going to be many different reactions to this news. However, one thing that is almost certain, is that there will be a new bump in the number of vampire books coming out and being read this year. In fact, it is already becoming something of a joke on Twitter where numerous authors have announced that they too have a secret vampire book they’ve been waiting to show the world.

So, that’s the news. A lot of interesting niches that don’t normally get a lot of attention are zooming up the best seller lists this week. It will be interesting to see how the book charts change over the continued weeks and potentially months the UK spends in lock down. I’ll look forward to finding out.

But in brief, here are the niches and trends;

  • Adult Colouring Books
  • Mental Health, Organisation, Fitness, and Recipe Self Help Books
  • Educational Books for kids
  • Medical Memoirs
  • Adult Fiction and Children’s Fiction, especially books with adaptations and awards in the news
  • Stephanie Meyer’s, Midnight Sun, keep an eye out for a rise in vampire fiction!

K