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Ghosts was the #1 kids paperback book last year amid growing interest in graphic novels for younger readers

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At Publishers Weekly, the kids department is rounding up some facts and figures for 2017, including all the best sellers via Bookscan. You can see all the numbers here, but I’ve pulled out the GNs and the mixed use titles (Wimpy Kid and Dork Diaries) and highlighted two titles in red, a MArvel story book and Where The Wild Things are, just to give a benchmark.

Before you get to the numbers, another PW article surveys agents at the recent children’s book focused  Bologna Book Fair for their thoughts on kids books in general, and many mentioned graphic novels as a trend. You should definitely read the comments in context – and for many other insights about the international rights market for children’s books, but a selection:

“Domestically, we’re seeing more marginalized voices across age groups, more graphic novels, more fantasy.” –  Cheryl Pientka, Jill Grinberg Literary Management

“More and more foreign publishers are looking at American graphic novels, specifically ones with strong narratives, and these are translating into film as well.” — Rachel Horowitz, Maria B. Campbell Associates

“[C]orrelating with the significant upswing in interest in graphic novels domestically, we are noticing that some markets seem more open to these works in translation than in years past.” — Jonathan Lyons, Curtis Brown Ltd.

 

A lot is happening  in the YA graphic novel space, with a ton more books coming out this year and next. I’ll be looking at some of the lesser known titles over the next week or so.

Best selling children’s books 2016

Hardcover Frontlist

200,000+

2. Double Down (Diary of a Wimpy Kid #11). Jeff Kinney. Abrams/Amulet (1,135,249)

25. Dog Man. Dav Pilkey. Scholastic/Graphix (117,653)

Paperback Frontlist

200,000+

1. Ghosts. Raina Telgemeier. Scholastic/Graphix (213,235)

150,000+

Hardcover Backlist

400,000+

2. Old School (Diary of a Wimpy Kid #10). Kinney Jeff. Abrams/Amulet (486,544)

300,000+

200,000+

14. Tales from a Not-So-Perfect Pet Sitter (Dork Diaries #10). Rachel Renée Russell. Simon & Schuster/Aladdin (208,033)

100,000+

16. The Long Haul (Diary of a Wimpy Kid #9). Jeff Kinney. Abrams/Amulet (185,546)

17. The Wimpy Kid Do-It-Yourself Book. Jeff Kinney. Abrams/Amulet (185,364)

20. Diary of a Wimpy Kid. Jeff Kinney. Abrams/Amulet (170,829)

 38. Hard Luck (Diary of a Wimpy Kid #8). Jeff Kinney. Abrams/Amulet (135,925)

41. Rodrick Rules (Diary of a Wimpy Kid #2). Jeff Kinney. Abrams/Amulet (128,338)

42. The Last Straw (Diary of a Wimpy Kid #3). Jeff Kinney. Abrams/Amulet (125,484)

43. Cabin Fever (Diary of a Wimpy Kid #6). Jeff Kinney. Abrams/Amulet (125,043)

47. Auggie & Me: Three Wonder Stories. R.J. Palacio. Knopf (118,496)
49. Dog Days (Diary of a Wimpy Kid Book #4). Jeff Kinney. Abrams/Amulet (115,524)
51. The Ugly Truth (Diary of a Wimpy Kid #5). Jeff Kinney. Abrams/Amulet (111,710)

52. The Third Wheel (Diary of a Wimpy Kid #7). Jeff Kinney. Abrams/Amulet (110,554)

55. 5-Minute Marvel Stories. Disney/Marvel Press (108,391)

Paperback Backlist

200,000+

12. Drama. Raina Telgemeier. Scholastic/Graphix (212,852)

100,000+

16. Smile. Raina Telgemeier. Scholastic/Graphix (188,861)

22. Kristy’s Great Idea (Baby-Sitters Club Graphix #1). Ann M. Martin, illus. by Raina Telgemeier. Scholastic/Graphix (162,118)

24. Where the Wild Things Are. Maurice Sendak. HarperCollins (160,533)

44. The Truth About Stacey (Baby-Sitters Club Graphix #2). Ann M. Martin, illus. by Raina Telgemeier. Scholastic/Graphix (116,560)

50. Mary Anne Saves the Day (Baby-Sitters Club #3). Ann M. Martin, illus. by Raina Telgemeier. Scholastic/Graphix (105,510)

3 COMMENTS

  1. Among the many reasons why Raina Telgemeier is the YA colossus is that her own books are done-in-one. I’m looking at a LOT of YA books right now and it’s distressingly cynical to see how virtually every one of them is part one of who knows how many? Some are better than others in terms of delivering a satisfying narrative in one volume, but I’ve found that most of the volumes deliberately skimp on page count and pad it with pin-ups and process pages, or that the narrative itself is padded out. I am not at all a fan of the Amulet series or Kazu Kabuishi’s work in general, but he at least made sure to pack each volume full of action instead of putting the reader to sleep. Unfortunately, the success of his books has helped create that trend.

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