The sales of print books have increased 2.8% in 2015, which is the second year in a row that the format has posted significant gains. In 2014 paperback and hardcover books rose 2.4%.
Nielsen Bookscan is reporting that in 2015 over 652 million books were sold in the United States. The data stems from major publishers who account for over 80% of print unit sales.
The retail and club channel had a particularly good year in 2015, with sales up 5.4% over 2014. The increase offset an 8.8% drop in sales through the mass merchandisers channel. The retail and club segment includes independent and chain bookstores, as well as Amazon; the mass merchandiser channel includes such large chains as Walmart.
The hottest category in 2015 was art/architecture/photography, which had a 60% increase in unit sales in 2015 over 2014. Adult coloring books fall into this category and they had a huge year. Animal Kingdom: Color Me, Draw Me sold over 332,000 copies.