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Most YA Book Buyers -- And Readers -- Aren't YA

Article written by guest writer Kecia Lynn

What's the Latest Development?

Fifty-five percent of books classified as being for "young adults" (ages 12-17) are purchased by adults, according to a biannual study on children's book publishing. This in itself isn't all that surprising, but what makes this news (for those who, perhaps, don't remember counting the number of open Harry Potter books on the morning subway commute not that long ago) is that 78 percent of the time the books aren't being purchased for a child or teen, but for the adults themselves. Asked to provide more specifics, a full 30 percent of adults in the study reported that they were currently reading books in the Hunger Games series.

What's the Big Idea?

A vice-president of the research company behind the study says, “The investigation into who is reading YA books began when we noticed a disparity between the number of YA e-books being purchased and the relatively low number of kids who claim to read e-books.” The phenomenon goes beyond the popularity of The Hunger Games: The other 70 percent of adults currently reading YA fiction reported a wide range of different titles. Among other things, the study reports that over 40 percent of this demographic reads e-books, and many more will buy the print version if the e-book version isn't available.

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