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Hardback sales plummeting in age of the Ebook
Sales of adult hardback fiction have fallen by over 10% this year alone, with Ebooks now accounting for 13.6% of US market

Dramatic falls in hardback sales are turning the triumph of the ebook into a defeat for paper publishing, with readers in their thousands opting for electronic editions rather than expensive, dust-jacketed copies of the latest fiction titles.

Sales of adult fiction in hardback so far this year have fallen by over 10% according to book sales monitor Nielsen BookScan: by this point last year, sales of the format had reached £29.7m, while this year they stand at £26.6m. Cheaper paperback sales, in contrast, have only fallen 6%. Hardback sales have fallen in volume as well as value, BookScan said, from 2.8m copies sold by this point last year to 2.6m this, echoing a trend over the last two years: 8.5m copies of adult fiction hardbacks were sold in total in 2009, compared to just 7m in 2010.

"In the early part of this year we have definitely seen a reduction in sales, which is probably down to ebook sales of really popular books cannibalising an amount of the regular sales, as heavy book buyers with a Kindle buy in ebook rather than physical format," said André Breedt at Nielsen BookScan. "Ebook sales after last Christmas are at their biggest ever level."

The Guardian