- Joe Raedle/Getty Images
- Political book sales have jumped 57% this year, according to data from bookseller Barnes & Noble.
- State-specific data show that customers are divided along party lines on whether they prefer critical or favorable books on President Donald Trump.
- With only five exceptions, customers’ tastes aligned with their states’ votes in the 2016 presidential election.
- “Fear: Trump in the White House” was Barnes & Noble’s fastest-selling title in over three years, selling more than one copy per second on its release day.
Political book sales reached record highs in 2018, but customers are sharply divided on their preferences.
According to data released by bookseller Barnes & Noble, 2018 has seen a 57% jump in political book sales from the previous year.
The bookseller listed high-profile tell-alls including author Michael Wolff’s “Fire and Fury,” and former FBI Director James Comey’s “A Higher Loyalty” as its second- and third-best selling books, both of which are bombshell accounts of a chaotic administration.
Barnes & Noble said in the release that its top title, journalist Bob Woodward’s “Fear: Trump in the White House,” sold more than one copy per second on its release day, making it the company’s fastest-selling book in over three years.
Though sales surged overall, state-specific data showed customer preference varies along party lines, with some exceptions. Generally, Trump-won states preferred books that were favorable to Trump, while states that went blue in 2016 preferred books that were critical of the president.
However, a map from Barnes & Noble shows that customers in Colorado, Pennsylvania, Nevada, New Hampshire, and Wisconsin flipped their book tastes away from their votes in the 2016 election.
- Courtesy of Barnes & Noble
The map of customer preferences is overwhelmingly similar to a map showing the 2016 Electoral College results, with the exceptions of Colorado, Nevada, and New Hampshire (all states that former Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton won) leaning toward flattering books and Trump-won Wisconsin and Pennsylvania now favoring books that are critical of Trump.
- Business Insider/Andy Kiersz/Skye Gould
The data also found that customers in Florida, North Carolina, and Texas were the most likely to buy books supporting Trump, while critical books dominated in California, New York, and Massachusetts.
Throughout the year, the White House hit back at the most explosive allegations leveled in books that topped nonfiction bestseller lists. However, there is still a steady stream of upcoming titles landing before the end of the year from former campaign aides, administration members, and porn star Stormy Daniels.