Recession Increases Demand for Romance and Fantasy Fiction

November 22, 2009 by  

amazon-com--sookie-stackhouse--books-1-7--charlain-lrgPeople may be continuing to struggle in the bad economy, but Sookie is doing just fine. According to Publishers Weekly, books like Charlaine Harris’ Southern Vampire series are even more popular during these hard times.

It’s an interesting psychological observation, but it makes sense–people turn to comfort reading as a way of dealing with life. It costs less to buy a mass market paperback like one of the Sookie novels or some romance book, than to go to see a movie at the theater, and you get hours of enjoyment out of it with a guaranteed happy ending. According to an editor at a publishing company,

“For people worried about finances and job security, delving into a romance can be a great way to escape that stress for a little while.”

Paranormal stories have been especially successful. Variety reported that about 12.4 million people were watching each episode of True Blood during its second season. Twilight was breaking box office records before it even opened this weekend.

Fantasy authors are gaining new fans all the time, whether they are established like Charlaine Harris with the Sookie Stackhouse and Harper Connelly books, and Sherrilyn Kenyon of the Dark Hunter series, or newcomers to the genre. In addition to vampires and werewolves, tales of other supernatural creatures like angels, demons, zombies, and succubi are starting to enchant readers.

We may be in the midst of a financial crisis, but imagination will never go bankrupt or lose its job. Thankfully, we have a lot of creativity and good writing to escape to when we need to get away from reality for a little while.


(Photo credit: