Monday, June 23, 2014

Just The Facts

76% of American adults 18 and older read at least one book in 2013
  • 69% read a book in print
  • 28% read an e-book
  • 14% listened to an audio book

The average number of books read or listened to in 2013 is 12; median is five.

52% of readers only read a print book; 4% only read an e-book, and 2% only listened to an audiobook. Nine percent of readers said they read books in all three formats.
  • 35% of print book readers also read an e-book and 17% listened to an audiobook
  • 87% of e-book readers also read a print book in the past 12 months and 29% listened to an audiobook
  • 84% of audiobook listeners also read a print book in the past year and 56% read an e-book.

42% of adults own a tablet
  • Among tablet owners who read an e-book in 2013, 78% read e-books on their tablet

32% of adults own an e-reader
  • Among e-reader owners who read an e-book in 2013, 87% read it on their e-reader

Source: “A Snapshot of Reading in America in 2013” Pew Research Center

What group do you fall into?

I consider myself an e-book reader since 90% of books I read are on my e-reader.

--Dru Ann


  1. Wow those are some numbers! I have a nook and love to read books on it. But I read more paper copies than I do e-copies. Great post Dru!!

  2. I've got a Kindle Fire loaded with books but I still prefer paperbacks. I don't do audio books because I've never enjoyed being read to, I guess because I wasn't read to as a child.

    1. I tried audio books, but my mind wanders.

  3. I have usually read more print books than e-books and prefer to, especially paperbacks. They're less expensive than hardcover and easier to hold in bed. Lately I've read more e-books than print. I've been re-reading the Chief Inspector Gamache series by Louise Penny in the e-book format. You're doing that too, aren't you, Dru? It's interesting that the average number of books read per person is 12 per year.

    1. Yes, I re-read the entire J.D. Robb series that I read in print, on my e-reader.

  4. Very interesting statistics. Thanks for bringing them to our attention, Dru Ann.

    Myself, I consume books in all formats--paper, digital, and audio. Audio is perfect for the wicked Houston traffic. Maximizes my time gobbling books up too. I buy most of my books. I don't have the patience for the library....but the house is so full of them that if I end up not being passionate about the book, then I donate it to the library.

    I estimate I read, one way or the other, 100-150 books a year. I've never kept lists, but I am a little up to date now on Goodreads, but not obsessive about it. I wish that way back, say, 15 years ago, I had begun keeping a list of all I'd read.

    My guess is my current split is this--
    10% audio, 40% digital, & 50% paper (either hardback or trade paperback, very few mass market books).
    Most of what I read now is mystery/crime/thriller/spy -- since 2006 probably it skews to 90-95%. That's when I began writing mysteries. Before that I read more broadly.

    1. Last year I read over 200 books. We're definitely above average readers.

  5. Hi Dru Ann,

    I think I'm about 50% paper book and 50% ebook. I like ebooks because I have limited space and also it's convenient for reading under the covers at night, but I can't seem to give up my book buying habit!

    1. That's one of the reasons I like e-readers. Right now my bookcase is overflowing and I'm afraid I may have to donate some of my books (not the ones that are autographed) to the library or a nursing home.

  6. This to me is sad: The average number of books read or listened to in 2013 is 12; median is five.
    But I personally believe folks are reading a lot more now that there are e-books.
    I read 90% now on my Kindle. 10% paperback because sometimes it's cheaper to buy a used paperback than the e-book when I want to read a whole, large series.
    I tried audio books and my mind wanders too much when I'm doing other things.


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