Audio and eBook Library Loans in 2021 Reveal Unexpected Stars | Libraries

UK library users are widely regarded as a traditional bunch when it comes to choosing their next read, but while Richard Osman could top the list of the most borrowed eBooks of the year, the Ellery Adams’ story of a North Carolina bookstore owner distributing bibliotherapy on a freshly baked scone made a surprising entry on the list.

Adams’ 2017 title The Secret, Book & Scone Society, in which Miracle Springs bookseller Nora prescribes the “Perfect Novel to Ease A Person’s Deepest Pain”, only for one of her clients. Be Found Murdered, was the UK’s fourth most popular ebook. public libraries in 2021. He was more popular than the winner of Booker Shuggie Bain by Douglas Stuart, who came in fifth, and Jack Reacher’s latest novel by Lee Child The Sentinel, although he came behind The Thursday Murder Club d ‘Osman, The Midnight Library by Matt Haig, and Klara and the Sun by Kazuo Ishiguro. The figures come from OverDrive, which provides access to e-books and audiobooks to more than 3,000 libraries across the UK.

Ellery Adams. Photography: Amy Stern / Kensington Publishing

Adams said she was “stunned, humbled and deeply grateful” at the news. “I also want to tell UK readers that in addition to being an admirer of every author on the list, I am a fan of the Oxford comma. I wanted it on the cover. Really, “she said.” And could someone tell me if I should say ‘scone’ like in ‘skone’ or ‘scuns’? Seriously. “

She came up with the idea for her series of books “because I love books placed in libraries and bookstores” and “wanted to write about the healing power of books”.

The Secret Society Book and Scone by Ellery Adams
Photography: Kensington Publishing

“I know it sounds like the word ‘bibliotherapy’, but books save people. All book lovers have practiced bibliotherapy at least once. Have you ever put a book in someone’s hand knowing it would get it out of their head for a few hours? Whether it would make them laugh, solve a problem, or ignite a spark of hope? Did someone give you a title that ended up breaking your heart, releasing a load of stress and sadness? ” she said. “This is how bibliotherapy works. I wanted to trace the path of the good book (s) to find their way to the right reader. Once I figured that out, I added a group of foodie characters, a mystery, and a small town setting.

OverDrive also revealed the most borrowed audiobooks from UK libraries this year – and although the list tops the ever-popular Harry Potter and JK Rowling’s Chamber of Secrets, two mysteries by Canadian author Brenda Chapman occupy two unexpected places in the Top 10, ahead of the titles of Michelle Obama, Kazuo Ishiguro and Marian Keyes. Chapman’s cold mourning, which follows Officer Kala Stonechild’s investigation into the disappearance of a wealthy businessman, takes second place here. Her Butterfly Kills, in which Stonechild, from a First Nations reserve, investigates an apparently related murder and rape, # 8.

Brenda Chapman.
Brenda Chapman. Photograph: Graham Law / Dundurn Group Ltd

“The importance of having Cold Mourning as No 2 and Butterfly Kills No 8 on UK Audiobook Loans took me a while to absorb, but I was both delighted and grateful to know that my books were understood by so many mysteries. Fans. I’m still a bit over the moon, ”Chapman said.

Cold Mourning by Brenda Chapman.
Photograph: Dundurn Group Ltd

Cold Mourning was Chapman’s first attempt in an adult mystery series. “I was working as a senior communications advisor at the Department of Justice on the Indigenous file, and Kala Stonechild came out of all the disturbing and sometimes horrific news I read on a daily basis on Indigenous issues,” she said. “I wanted to create a damaged but heroic and intuitive Indigenous protagonist and show her journey. Since we are also a bilingual and multicultural country, I include characters from many different cultures and nationalities throughout the series.

Her work in government also took her to handling the forced marriage case, which “became the nugget of an idea for the Butterfly Kills mystery,” she said.

“Readers tell me they love to follow the lives of my top cops, especially Kala Stonechild, who was called the first lead Aboriginal detective in a series,” Chapman said. “They especially like Stonechild’s relationship with a teenage girl whom she welcomes while struggling with her own difficult upbringing in foster care. Readers also enjoy trying to solve winding murder plots and reading about the Canadian setting. “

Other popular audiobooks in UK libraries this year include Mythos by Stephen Fry and The Coffinmaker’s Garden by Stuart MacBride.

Top 10 UK public libraries ebooks in 2021

  1. Richard Osman’s Thursday Murder Club

  2. The Midnight Library by Matt Haig

  3. Klara and the sun by Kazuo Ishiguro

  4. The Secret Society Book and Scone by Ellery Adams

  5. Suggie Bain by Douglas Stuart

  6. Lee Child’s Sentry

  7. Ann Cleeves’ darkest evening

  8. Five Total Strangers by Natalie D Richards

  9. The greats of Marian Keyes

  10. Bridgerton Collection, volume 1 by Julia Quinn

Top 10 UK public libraries audiobooks in 2021

  1. Harry Potter and JK Rowling’s Chamber of Secrets

  2. Cold Mourning by Brenda Chapman

  3. A Song for Dark Times by Ian Rankin

  4. Becoming by Michelle Obama

  5. Klara and the sun by Kazuo Ishiguro

  6. The Casket Maker’s Garden by Stuart MacBride

  7. Myth of Stephen Fry

  8. Kill Butterflies by Brenda Chapman

  9. The greats of Marian Keyes

  10. Still life of Val McDermid

* Figures provided by OverDrive.

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