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Top Selling eBooks of 2004 Announced


Strong Q3 in 2004 With Double Digit Sales Increase Over 2003

NEW YORK, NY -- 01/12/2005 -- The Open eBook Forum ( released its annual list of Top Selling eBooks today. Dan Brown dominated the 2004 list with “The Da Vinci Code” topping the list and Brown’s “Angels & Demons” and “Deception Point” rounding out the top three. At the same time, the industry reported continued growth, with eBook revenues for the third quarter of 2004 up 25% and eBook units sold up 11% over the same quarter in 2003. The bestseller list and quarterly eBook Statistics Report were both released by the Open eBook Forum (OeBF), the industry trade and standards organization.

“We are very pleased to have so many eBooks on this year’s bestseller list,” said Claire Israel, Director of ePublishing and eCommerce at Simon & Schuster. “eBooks are a way for our authors to reach their avid fans in a new and innovative way. Simon & Schuster is excited to offer book lovers a choice to use the latest technology when they read. We hope to connect more readers to our authors in the future using eBooks.”

The OeBF 2004 eBook Bestseller List includes the bestselling eBooks reported from the leading eBook retailers and distributors including,,, and OverDrive. The top 10 bestselling eBooks were:

1. The Da Vinci Code by Dan Brown (Doubleday - $14.95)
2. Angels & Demons by Dan Brown (PocketBooks - $6.99)
3. Deception Point by Dan Brown (PocketBooks - $6.99)
4. Digital Fortress by Dan Brown (St. Martin’s Press - $5.99)
5. Darwin’s Radio by Greg Bear (Del Rey - $6.99)
6. Holy Bible, New International Version - International Bible Society (Zondervan - $14.99)
7. I, Robot by Isaac Asimov (Spectra - $4.99)
8. Electronic Pocket Oxford English Dictionary & Thesaurus Value Pack (Oxford University Press - $19.95)
9. Darwin’s Children by Greg Bear (Del Rey - $6.99)
10. Merriam-Webster’s Collegiate® Dictionary (Merriam-Webster - $25.95)

Scott Adams, the creator of the popular Dilbert cartoon strip and books, stated, “eBooks have been a substantial portion of my total book sales. I’ve reached a lot of readers who don’t like the higher cost of hardcover books.” Mr. Adams’ self-published eBook version of “God’s Debris” is #19 on the bestseller list.
A significant percentage of the eBook bestsellers for 2004 can also be found on year-end print bestseller lists indicating eBook purchasing is following the diversity of mainstream reading habits. The full 30 bestsellers for 2004 can be found on the OeBF website at

“The bestsellers tell only part of the success story of eBooks in 2004,” stated Mike Violano, Vice President and General Manager of “Customer purchases continue to reflect vastly growing interests across many subjects; in fact, more than 7,000 titles have sales in any given month at”

The OeBF also released today details of its Q3 eBook Statistics Report. Compiled from data submitted by 23 of the world’s leading eBook publishers and retailers, the findings revealed:


-- Revenues: $3,227,972 in sales have been logged by retailers in Q3 2004, a 25% increase over the same period in 2003 during which time retailers reported $2,591,469 on sales of eBooks.

-- Unit Sales: A total of 419,962 eBooks were sold in Q3 2004 alone, an 11% increase over the same period in 2003, during which time 377,095 units were sold.

A detailed report of the full survey findings and archived reports from 2002, 2003 and 2004 are available to OeBF Members only and companies who contributed to the reports. Details on OeBF membership can be found at The OeBF is now offering a 20% discount on first-year membership dues through January 28th, 2005 which will grant access to the reports.
Publishers and retailers that contributed to the 3rd quarter 2004 survey are:; Elib; Ellora’s Cave Publishing, Inc.;; Fictionwise, Inc.; Franklin Electronic Publishers; Hard Shell Word Factory; HarperCollins; Holtzbrinck Publishers; Houghton Mifflin Company; Laridian, Inc.; McGraw-Hill Professional;; Numilog; OverDrive, Inc.; Pearson Education;; RAND Corporation; Random House; Simon & Schuster; Stonehouse Press; Time Warner Book Group and Zondervan.

By comparison, publishers and retailers that contributed to the 3rd quarter 2003 survey were: Biblesoft, Inc.; Dell Magazines; Double Dragon Publishing;; Elib AB; E-Reads; Fictionwise, Inc.; Franklin Electronic Publishers; Hard Shell Word Factory; HarperCollins Publishers; Holtzbrinck Publishers; Houghton Mifflin Company; John Wiley & Sons, Inc.; Laridian, Inc.; Logos Research Systems, Inc.; Love Kush Publications;;; OverDrive; Palm Digital Media;; RAND Corporation; Random House; Seattle Book Company; Simon & Schuster; The McGraw-Hill Companies; Time Warner Book Group; University of California Press; WORDsearch Corp and Zondervan.

The statistical reports released by the OeBF represent aggregate statistics submitted by reporting companies and does not represent the entire eBook publishing and retail industries. Participating companies that report to the program vary quarter by quarter and the report reflects this variability. Members of the media who would like access to the full report and charts should contact Nick Bogaty at 212-924-9081 or

About the Open eBook Forum:

The Open eBook Forum,, is an international non-profit trade and standards organization for the electronic publishing industry. The organization is supported by membership dues and the generous support of Adobe Systems, Inc., Microsoft Corporation, OverDrive, Inc. and

An OeBF member list and membership information can be found on the OeBF Web site at


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