Sales of To Kill a Mocking Bird novel shoot up

Sales of 1960 novel To Kill a Mockingbird skyrocketed since award winning author Harper Lee announced sequel, years after publishing classic

Photo by: Reuters
Photo by: Reuters

Updated Jul 28, 2015

Anticipations around Harper Lee’s upcoming novel “Go Set a Watchman,” expected to be released on July 14, has sent sales of her prize winning book “To Kill a Mockingbird” soaring once again fifty five years after being published. 

“I’m not going to make a sales forecast, it’s inappropriate, but it’s going to be a big book. It won’t need a huge amount of marketing, it will have a certain amount of marketing. Most people in America have read To Kill a Mockingbird,” said Robert Thomson, chief executive of HarperCollins’ parent company News Corp, who has already read the book. 

“It’s a prequel sequel, written before To Kill a Mockingbird. You get a sense of the character development as Harper Lee imagined it in the beginning. It is quite an interesting structure,” Thomson added.

The novel is currently on Time's list of “All-Time 100 Novels,” with critic Lev Grossman describing the books as “a classic of moral complexity and an endlessly renewable fund of wisdom about the nature of human decency.” 

To Kill a Mockingbird is a story set in the US during the time of the Depression, touching on sensitive issues such as racial inequality and bravery. 

HarperCollins Publishers states that 369,000 shipments of the novel has been sent out between Feb. 3 and May 30, compared with 59,000 copies in the same period of 2014.

Grand Central Publishing, the holder of majority of the rights of To Kill a Mockingbird’s paperback version stated that sales of paperbacks rose 73 percent to 165 000 copies from February through to May, compared with the same period in 2014, citing Citing Nielsen BookScan according to the Wall Street Journal. 

Online retailer reports that it has sold 2938 percent more copies since Lee's announcement. The book's 50th anniversary edition has also surged to 2466 per cent and DVD sales of the Oscar-winning film adaptation, rose by 1194 per cent.

TRTWorld and agencies