Audiobooks and online reading were the stories of the year at Shetland Library, which noticed a change of literary habits during the pandemic.
With the library closed for a time during lockdown, borrowers turned in larger numbers to eBooks and audiobooks to maintain their reading.
The library’s most borrowed list shows the top spot for ‘physical loans’ in adult fiction went to Jojo Moyes’ The Giver of Stars, a novel about packhorse librarians in America.
When ebooks and audiobooks were added it was checked out 146 times.
But J.K. Rowling’s Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone had 182 issues, nearly all eAudio.
Ann Cleeves, who topped the adult fiction charts for many years with her Shetland Island Mysteries series, dropped to second place with The Long Call, the first of her new series set in Devon.
Most borrowed physical non-fiction book was The Frayed Atlantic Edge by David Gange, the story of his canoe journey from Shetland to Cornwall.
In children’s fiction, David Walliams’ The World’s Worst Children 2 topped the list of physical borrowing, followed by Jeff Kinney’s The Third Wheel – though each was surpassed by J K Rowling when eBooks and audiobooks were added.
The growth in eAudiobook reading was shown by the top title, Marian Keyes’ Grown Ups, being borrowed 100 times – double the most popular in 2019, Jojo Moyes’ Still Me (50 loans) and more than three times more than 2018’s winner – Val McDermid’s The Distant Echo (30 loans).
Karen Fraser, executive manager of library services, said: “Whether online or offline, it is clear reading is playing a big part in people’s lives during the pandemic.”