Heading into Christmas, sales of New Zealand-published children’s books are on a roll — helping the domestic publishing industry to reach more readers with local stories in 2018.
In the 11 months to the end of November, sales of New Zealand books were up +1.6% by volume compared to the same period last year.
Children’s books account for much of that dynamism, with volume sales up +16.7% and value sales +18.8% compared to 2017.
Unusually for a segment dominated by fiction and picture books, three of the top ten children’s books in the Christmas selling period to date are non-fiction titles.
Picture book The Wonky Donkey, given global prominence from a viral Facebook video, has galloped to the top of the sales charts.
Growth is not limited to children’s, however, with New Zealand fiction for adults seeing a sales boost of almost +2% by volume.
“New Zealand publishing is in good heart and proving the value of quality, locally authored work to readers here and around the world,” commented Peter Dowling, President of the Publishers Association of New Zealand (PANZ).
Children’s book sales globally are booming, evidenced by rights and distribution activity at industry fairs attended by PANZ in 2018 including the Bologna Children’s Book Fair, Frankfurt Book Fair and Guadalajara International Book Fair.
“That trend is being reflected here with new publishers and bookstores opening, and a growing range of gorgeous and engaging books by New Zealand authors and illustrators,” Dowling said.