The publishing world saw an increase in sales for the first six months compared to 2019. That trend did not apply fo J. K. Rowling and her books.
Rowling’s controversial remarks about transgender identity have made fans of her books rebuke her work. During the month of June, Rowling’s print sales rose in the U.S. by 10.9%. That includes the Harry Potter books and other works by the author. That is a giant contrast to the 31.4% increase by print books in fiction in June.
That might not seem bad but when you look at 2019, Rowling suffered a big decline. Print books in June 2019 rose 33.3% while Rowling’s books rose 35.2% during the same time. That data shows how fans are distancing themselves from Rowling’s works since her remarks about transgenders.
Kristen McLean, analyst and executive director of business development at the NPD Group believes Rowling is underperforming compared to the rest of the market “comparatively, by two thirds.”
“Looking at [Rowling’s] performance against the rest of the market, especially as benchmarked against her performance in 2019 — which was very consistent with the rest of the market — I think she’s down,”
Before June, Rowling’s book were up 26.5% compared to the first six months in 2019. Now, that trend may disappear. The controversy surrounding Rowling went viral and she has been even been rebuked by her movie star Harry Potter aka Daniel Radcliffe.
The decline in sales could have cost as much as $2 million. The Harry Potter books have been everywhere since the 2000’s but that may not be the case. Even Rowling’s upcoming movies will likely see a decrease in sales as a result.
Will you still be reading the Harry Potter books as the world starts to shun them? And should we treat the books separate from Rowling or do they all suffer the same fate?