The hottest book in town right now is the Holy Bible. Over the last month, Tyndale House Publishers — one of several companies that sells Bibles and other religious texts — has seen 44% and 60% jumps in 2 of its major Bible editions.
An executive told the Christian Post that this isn’t the first time people have turned to the company in a crisis: Business also boomed after 9/11.
The publishing industry is stuck on a cliffhanger
With bookstores shuttering, festivals canceled, and major book releases postponed, publishers are feeling the crunch. Adult fiction dropped 21%, according to Forbes, with genre novels taking the biggest hint:
- Epic fantasy fell 25%.
- Crime thrillers sunk 24%.
COVID-19 is reshuffling popular literature as we know it, and — religious texts aside — there are a few big winners.
Parents across the country are giving Brain Quest workbooks to their kids, and sales of children’s nonfiction were up almost 40% at one point in mid-March. One micropress — Modern Kid Press, run by a Texas couple — has 5 workbooks on Amazon’s Top 100 overall bestseller list.
Pestilence lit is the new crime novel
The other alphas of the new publishing industry: All those classic novels that you promised yourself you would get around to reading one day, like One Hundred Years of Solitude, and — of course — pandemic fiction.
This March, The Plague by Albert Camus and Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel each saw double to triple increases in sales, raising the ultimate question — why settle for escapism when you can drown your fears in the most dystopian version of reality?
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