Thursday, December 08, 2005

2005 book sales in the US

The Literary Saloon provides a link to an article in the New York Times about the sales of books in the US during the past year. You can read it yourself by clicking here, but note (a) that you have to register, and (b) that you have to put up with an advert for Buick before you get to read it.

The general picture is one of doom and gloom, but the main point is that we get some solid figures from Bookscan, rather than just flim-flim from a publisher's spokesperson.

And, of course, you won't be surprised to read the Literary Saloon's comment that Salman Rushdie 'hasn't had a sales-success in the US in ages (which probably has something to do with the facts that the past few books haven't been that great (to put it politely)); like Martin Amis he gets tons of press, but shifts (relatively) few copies.'

Go on. Really? Who'd've thunk it.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Grumpy Old Bookman,
I think we've both been around long
enough to see that in spite of too
many books being published these
days (most bad), things haven't
really changed that much since
Balzac's times in the late 1830's.
I do believe that the dead and rightly revered Honore has written a story or two on freelance
novel writing and the pennies in return.
I guess the Martin Amises get some luck with famous fathers and all, but now they have to play the game of Balzac's characters, watching the Wild Ass' skin shrink and shrink till they are forced to get a job. We in this century have so much more time, we live so long. We can retreat and recoup. But for the Balzacs, you only had about
twoscore years to do it in--and that was all.