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Love and Marriage Book Sales On the Rise in the US, The NPD Group Says

Genre sales tend to peak over Valentine’s Day and the Q4 holidays


There was greater interest in love and marriage books in the United States in 2019 than in any year in the past five years. In fact, year-over-year sales of books in this genre grew 5 percent in 2019, reaching 1.7 million copies according to global information company The NPD Group.

Based on the latest information from NPD Bookscan, which tracks the U.S. publishing market, the top selling book in this category in 2019 was “The Five Love Languages,” by Gary Chapman. Total lifetime sales of all editions of this book sold in the U.S. have reached 7 million copies. Other top titles include “He’s Just Not That Into You,” by Greg Behrendt (1.3 million lifetime unit sales) and “Act Like A Lady, Think Like A Man,” by Steve Harvey (1.3 million lifetime unit sales).

Sales of love and marriage book sales tend to peak during the November-December holiday season and in February, in the lead up to the week of Valentine’s Day. In 2019 for example, love and marriage books sales were 30 percent over the annual monthly average in February. “This is a tried-and-true phenomenon,” said Kristen McLean, books industry analyst for NPD. “People return to and recommend trusted titles in this category over and over, making series like ‘The 5 Love Languages’ perennial backlist bestsellers year after year—it truly is the gift that keeps on giving for the reader, author, and publisher too.”

About NPD BookScan
NPD BookScan is the gold standard in point-of-sale tracking for the publishing market, covering approximately 85 percent of all the print books sold in the U.S. through direct reporting from all major retailers including Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Walmart, Target, independent bookstores, and many others. Each sale of the more than 16 million units tracked on a weekly basis includes geographic information making it possible to identify key markets, map regional sales trends, and index the likelihood of purchase in 200 major metro areas. NPD BookScan is also the exclusive provider of ALR data for Barnes & Noble, Target, Walmart, and Sam’s Club to U.S. publishers.

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