Three Trends Among Ebook Readers

This Wednesday, Digital Book World and The Huffington Post Books are co-hosting an exclusive, specially-priced webcast (just $9.99) to find out what ebook readers are actually reading.

What limited data exists on ebook sales still doesn’t tell you much about what consumers think of the titles they buy after the buy them. So we’re sitting down with editors at three of the top destinations for readers to talk about what they’re reading and make their opinions known. The hour-long webcast will provide a rare qualitative glimpse at some of the readers and reading habits that drive our weekly ebook best-seller list.

For now, The Huffington Post’s books editor Maddie Crum offers a sneak preview of the conversation she’ll be participating in on Wednesday. Here are three trends she’s seen among her audience of ebook readers lately:

1. Young Adult books could be leveling off as Divergent‘s dominance wanes. Prior to the release of the movie based on Veronica Roth’s wildly popular novel, Crum saw her audience’s passion for YA titles declining slightly. “The release of the Divergent film seems to have created a renewed interest in YA,” Crum said. “This often happens when film adaptations are released, regardless of whether or not they’re a flop.” It remains to be seen whether the slide down our charts Roth’s series took recently signals a return to the earlier trend. But for the present, the coincidence is worth noting.

2. “Mysteries and thrillers are more popular than ever right now,” Crum said. “I think most editors, marketers and publicists are cognizant of the Gone Girl craze,” she added, referring to Gillian Flynn’s popular domestic thriller–whose own movie adaptation is right around the corner. But formulaic approaches don’t always stick. According to Crum, readers of Huffington Post Books are quick to identify and respond to unique angles within those genres.

2. For readers, content trumps all. Huffington Post Books readers tend to gravitate equally toward content by well-known, traditionally published authors and self-published authors with smaller fan-bases. “Our Twitter followers as well as our readers who return regularly to our page seem to strongly support self-published authors,” Crum said. “A year ago, we ran an excerpt from a book published by an indie press, Soft Skull Press, and the sales numbers on Amazon skyrocketed. It was a piece on the sex lives of Muslim American women so, granted, it was a hot topic. But this isn’t a rare occurrence. It seems that even avid readers pay little attention to who published a book. What matters is the topic and the quality of the writing.”

For more insights on what’s grabbing ebook readers’ attention now, register for Wednesday’s webcast, where Crum will be joined by BuzzFeed’s Isaac Fitzgerald and Book Riot’s Rebecca Schinsky.

Click here to sign up for What Are Ebook Readers Reading? Current Market Trends for Authors, Agents and Publishers.

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