Barnes and Noble book sales were reportedly down this holiday season. Sales during the nine-week holiday shopping period, November 1, 2009, to January 2, 2010, were 5.4% percent lower than the same holiday shopping period a year ago. Overall sales during that time were up 17% because of the Nook.
Why is this interesting? When it was reported that sales across the industry were down only three percent, the question we raised was whether or not declining sales was a pattern. As Michael Cader reports in his publishing blog , "bear in mind that the comps a year ago were down 7 percent from 2007." That's more than a 12% drop in two years. How this will affect publishers and authors will be seen in the year ahead.