Total net book sales in May in the U.S. rose 11.1%, to $1.06 billion, compared to May 2020, representing sales of 1,358 publishers and distributed clients as reported to the Association of American Publishers. May 2020 was the second full month reflecting lockdowns in response to the Covid-19 pandemic. For the year to date, total net sales rose 23.4%, to $5.12 billion.
Most trade categories had gains during May, with the segment as a whole up 7.9%, to $685.2 million. In terms of format, sales of hardcovers rose 18.7%, to $252.8 million; paperbacks rose 14.5%, to $229.9 million; mass market fell 15.1%, to $19.2 million; board books fell 4.8%, to $9 million; and e-books declined 23.4%, to $86.3 million.
Sales by category in May 2021 compared to May 2020: