How many books do you typically read in an average year?

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2010201120122014
9%15%14%16%
1-214%14%15%17%
3-520%20%19%18%
6-1016%15%19%13%
11-2021%16%14%15%
21+19%20%19%21%
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About This Statistic

The statistic shows the results of a survey carried out to investigate the reading habits of Americans in terms of how many books they typically read in a year. If the respondents were unsure, they were asked to make their best estimate. In 2010, 21 percent of American adults stated that they read between 11 and 20 books in one year, whereas in 2012 this had decreased to 14 percent.


Number of books read by American adults per year - additional information

With the advent of e-readers and digital books, one might think that reading habits would also change. However, apart from a slight increase in electronic readership and a corresponding decrease in print readership, most reading habits of American adults have remained surprisingly steady throughout the years. For the past ten years or more, adults in the United States have spent around one hundred hours per year reading, and according to Pew Research, the mean and median number of books read per year have not changed significantly for some time.
How Americans buy books is one trend that has shown quite a bit of change in the last several years. The ease of shopping online for all formats of books—print, digital, and audio—has struck a blow against in-store retailers. Despite consumer spending on books increasing, bookstore revenues have been decreasing since at least 2008. The share of online book spending has not quite outpaced sales in brick and mortar stores, but it is highly likely that it will in the near future.
Because of their large area and populations, California and Texas lead the country with most bookstores per state, but according to Publishers Weekly, Montana has the most bookstores per capita. Mystery, thriller, and crime books rank as the most-read type of books for American adults, with books by E.L. James, Nicholas Sparks and John Grisham often topping the lists of best-sellers.

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