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Rebirth of publishing success with children’s book series

Children's Book Series

Series books have long been the bread and butter of children's reading, but not all children's series are of the same quality or the same publishing heft.

The overwhelming successes of children’s book series in recent years have included diverse storytelling strands, such as Harry Potter, Captain Underpants and Twilight. These children's series have sent publishers scrambling to uncover the next multi-title blockbuster craze.

Graphic Novels

Bestselling non-series titles (individual titles) include rapidly growing genres such as graphic novels.

Publishing Value Chain

The children’s book market has reclaimed a space as a lucrative space for publishers, editors, marketers, distributors and retailers in the trade book industry.

The nuances of children’s books compared to "young adult" titles needs to be better understood by everyone in the industry.

The market for children’s books vary segment by segment, from youngsters to tweens to teens. Industry trend reports such as the Children’s Publishing Market Forecast 2011 provide market intelligence on the publishing houses, and the entire retail landscape, from independent bookstores to online outlets to big box stores.

Bestselling children’s book trends are drawn from the USA Today, Publishers Weekly and New York Times list analysis, with breakdowns of top-performing titles, authors, imprints and a comprehensive category ranking of which books are selling and which are not.

The most vital facet of children’s publishing is series books.

Surveys of retailers across the country rate different books and genres help position the top 15 major juvenile categories, which are a subset of the 18 major bestselling subjects:

  • Art
  • Biography
  • Business
  • Classic literary fiction
  • Computers/technology books
  • Cookbooks
  • Graphic novels
  • Health & fitness
  • How-to
  • Mystery
  • Political commentaries/current events
  • Reference
  • Religious/inspirational
  • Romance
  • Science fiction/fantasy
  • Self-help
  • Sports
  • Travel

Children’s publishing is led by established publishers such as Candlewick Press, Disney Publishing Worldwide, Hachette Book Group, HarperCollins, Holtzbrinck, Houghton Mifflin, Penguin Group, Random House, Scholastic and Simon & Schuster.

But online publishing is also growing, with ebooks and hardware innovations leading the readers pathway into enhanced multimedia electronic books, hybrids, and the full color explosion of e-readers such as the tiny iPod, or the hefty iPad.

Children's publishing is changing rapidly, and 2011 will be a transitional year with exciting new methods bringing ideas and imagination to our children.

Book Publishing Trends

Authors and publishing professionals mix and match these niches to deal with over 5000 micro markets! This is an age of specialization in information creation and delivery.

Some of the trends pointed out in the 2009 book marketplace by Sigma market researchers include:

  • More Are Buying But They’re Buying Less
  • The Price War Continues
  • The Growing Power of Bestselling Authors
  • Media Tie-Ins and Popular Culture Feeding Books
  • E-Books Bringing Opportunity, Fragmentation
  • Internet Content Continuing to Gnaw at the Industry
  • Finding New Business Models
  • The Number of Authors, Titles Shrink as imprint List Grows
  • Publishers Combat Global Book Piracy

Information is undergoing a transformation as great as during the era of movable type innovations. Just as technologies changed at that time, it's changing now. But another change is in the purchasers of the information -- it's gain being democratized with new language, new niche markets, and new purposes. Publishing is no longer for the "elite of the day" but for thousands of niche markets who want specific, tailored information. And the Internet and it's e-book cousins are the movable type of today.

Distinctive Book Categories include

  • Adult Hardcover
  • Adult Trade Paperback
  • Adult Mass Market
  • Children’s & Young Adult Hardcover
  • Children’s & Young Adult Paperback
  • Audiobooks
  • Electronic Books
  • Religious Books

Leading US Consumer Book Publishers

  • Abrams
  • Andrews McMeel
  • Encyclopaedia Britannica
  • Hachette Book Group
  • Harlequin
  • HarperCollins
  • Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
  • Kensington Publishing
  • Macmillan
  • Penguin Group
  • Random House
  • Rodale
  • Scholastic
  • Simon Schuster
  • John Wiley & Sons

These are the conventional leaders, but there is no guarantee that these companies will make the leap into the age of e-movable type. New companies such as Google, Apple and Marvel are moving onto center stage.