Following the Digital Clues: Mystery Genre Spotlight

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The world of mystery is ever-popular and ever-evolving. Whether a classic “whodunit,” a cozy, a police procedural, or something in between, crime fiction still draws readers nationwide. In a brief survey of 232 public libraries conducted by LJ, 55% of respondents reported that mystery continues to be the most popular genre in terms of circulation. The survey also found that in print fiction collections, 24.1% of materials are mysteries.

What is new this year is that mystery titles make up over 20% of library ebook collections. And like their print counterparts, the highest circulating subgenres in mystery ebooks are police procedurals and cozies. However, 57% of the survey respondents do not purchase e-original mysteries (perhaps owing to a lack of review coverage and issues of discovery?); chief e-mystery purchase influencers are high-demand titles, user requests, and cost.

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