The Truth About Mystery Books

Mystery Books

Curious about the secrets of mystery books? Who’s buying them and why? Well then it sounds like you’re just the kind of person who likes a good mystery.

According to, here’s the lowdown on the sales of mystery books.

First off, actual real life bookstores continue to rake in the largest amount of sales for mystery books. But don’t discount our little friend the e-book, either. Mysteries sold as e-books rose from 1.9% of all sales in 2009 to 7% in the second quarter of 2010 – that’s quite a hop.

These findings come from a research study sponsored by Sister In Crime and conducted by Bowker’s PubTrack service, which delved into the mystery/crime fiction book-buying market. The study reports that 39% of mysteries were bought in physical storefronts in 2009, with borrowing books from libraries accounting for 17% of the way readers got their mysteries. Harcover books continued to fall as the amount of people buying e-books rose.

Women bought most of the mystery books, accounting for 68% of purchases. Regarding the ages of people who bought mystery books, it looks like 66% were over 45 years old, while 31% were between the ages of 18 to 44.

As for location, it looks like most readers of mystery books live in the suburbs, 48% of them, while readers living in rural areas made up 27% and urban residents made up

But the top reason people gave for buying a particular mystery? Knowing or liking the author who wrote the story, which makes author branding more important than ever.

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