As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to upend lives, societies, economies and nations' around the world, an unplanned yet welcome change has been time to pursue passions and hobbies, including reading.
They say books help us escape from even the worst of times, they let us experience the impossible and sometimes take us on adventures, even when we don't have the time for one in our own lives. People are switching to reading to escape their current surroundings even temporarily or to bring a little comfort amid a grim reality. Young India is also utilising this time to prep for a bright future.
According to online marketplace Flipkart, self-help and fiction books as a category saw an increase in searches, with books such as 'Rich Dad Poor Dad', the 'Harry Potter' series, and 'Think and Grow Rich' being part of the top searches.
With students and exam applicants having much time in hand owing to the pandemic, it saw an increase in demand for UPSC and NCERT books, engineering entrance exams and MBA preparation books. This also led to the e-commerce giant to add 30 new publishers across categories such as academic books focused on State boards across India, government examination guides, K-12 among others, it told IANSlife.
"Flipkart witnessed highest demand for books from states such as Uttar Pradesh, West Bengal, Maharashtra, Karnataka, Bihar, Tamil Nadu, Delhi, Kerala, Assam and Odisha. Cities that topped consumer interest include Bengaluru, New Delhi, Kolkata, Hyderabad, Mumbai, Pune, Lucknow, Ghaziabad, Gurugram and Patna," it added.
Overall, 55 percent of the demand for books on the platform came from Tier 3 and plus cities in the past quarter. When it came to metro consumers, the preference inclined towards juvenile fiction, autobiography/biography, fiction and self-help books. Tier 1A and 1B regions reflected a similar trend showing heightened reading preference for autobiographies and biographies. Tier 3 and plus consumers looked for government test and other exam preparatory books on the platform.
As per Google Trends for search phrases like 'Books To Read' in India this year, the interest picked up considerably from February as a nationwide lockdown was announced in late March. Other popular searches on Google include 'Books to read during quarantine' and 'Top books to read 2020'. (IANS)