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Book sales slump by almost 10 per cent in a year as Britons ditch reading novels

Book sales slump by almost 10 per cent in a year as Britons ditch reading novels in favour of watching box sets on Netflix

  • Sales of physical copies of fiction books dropped by nine per cent in UK last year
  • Increasing popularity of audiobooks and ebooks only partly offset the decline
  • While Netflix pumps millions into telling stories, novels struggling to compete
  • BBC and Sky also invest in drama and increasing their volume of online content 

Brits are swapping books for box sets as streaming services such as Netflix continue to grip viewers.

Sales of physical copies of fiction books dropped by nine per cent in Britain last year, the harshest drop in recent times.

The increasing popularity of audiobooks and ebooks only partly offset the decline.

With streaming sites such as Netflix and Amazon pumping millions of pounds into telling stories, industry figures show novels are struggling to compete (stock)

With streaming sites such as Netflix and Amazon pumping millions of pounds into telling stories, industry figures show novels are struggling to compete.

The BBC and Sky are also investing in drama and increasing their volume of online content.

Stephen Lotinga, chief executive of the Publisher’s Association – who compiled the numbers – told The Times: ‘One of the difficulties that fiction comes up against is the sheer pressure on people’s leisure time.

‘People make a choice between watching a Netflix boxset or reading a novel.’

Netflix - that has ten million British subscribers - counts reading, dinner with friends and enjoying a glass of wine as direct competitors (stock)

Netflix – that has ten million British subscribers – counts reading, dinner with friends and enjoying a glass of wine as direct competitors (stock)

Netflix – that has ten million British subscribers – counts reading, dinner with friends and enjoying a glass of wine as direct competitors.

The British publishing industry made £6 billion last year, down two per cent on 2017.

While 74.4 million physical fiction books were sold, this is down from 79.2 million.

Revenues on fiction books fell from £259 million to £236 million while digital fiction rose £4 million to £149 million.

Read more at DailyMail.co.uk


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