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New studies dive into Canada's most popular book genres

Toronto, ON – Feb. 16, 2017 – The Deep Dive research series launches with an investigation of Mystery/Detective book buyers

Canadians love their mystery novels. In 2016, there were almost 16,000 actively selling ISBNs in the Mystery/Detective genre — the most of any fiction category — which accounted for 2.2% of all book purchases in the country. This new research study from industry non-profit BookNet Canada, Deep Dive: The Mystery/Detective Book Buyer, digs deep into the sales trends and consumer habits of one of the biggest genres in Canada to find out how, why, and where Mystery readers buy books. 

When it comes to formats, according to consumer surveying, buyers of Mystery/Detective books have a strong preference for paperbacks (73%) over ebooks (25%), hardcovers (22%), and audiobooks (2%). As for where they make their purchases, Mystery fans are most likely to buy books online (30%) or at chain bookstores (24%). Interestingly, of all book buyers, they have the greatest percentage of readers who have not visited the library in the last month. 

For the most popular titles in the genre, sales data from national sales tracking service BNC SalesData shows that book buyers enjoy a mix of newcomers like Gillian Flynn and more classic authors like Agatha Christie. Looking specifically at the top five perennial bestsellers in the genre, you will find they are all books from the early aughts, including Joyland by Stephen King, The Lost Years by Mary Higgins Clark, Notorious Nineteen by Janet Evanovich, The Beautiful Mystery by Louise Penny, and The Nightmare by Lars Kepler. 

More information, including how buyers become aware of the titles they buy, how often they purchase books, which social networks they use, and much more is available in the full report, which is available for purchase at More Deep Dive studies will be released throughout 2017, with Biography & Autobiography and Cookbooks coming up next. Details will be shared at when they are published.

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BookNet Canada is a non-profit organization that develops technology, standards, and education to serve the Canadian book industry. Founded in 2002 to address systemic challenges in the industry, BookNet Canada supports publishing companies, booksellers, wholesalers, distributors, sales agents, and libraries across the country.

We acknowledge the financial support of the Government of Canada through the Canada Book Fund (CBF) for this project. / Nous reconnaissons l’appui financier du gouvernement du Canada par l’entremise du Fonds du livre du Canada (FLC) pour ce projet.

Media Contact:
Zalina Alvi
Marketing & Communications Manager
BookNet Canada 
(416) 362-5057 x 2250