What if Tolstoy's book was titled Dating Hot Russian Women?

An Amazon Books store in Seattle, Washington. Amazon accounted for nearly half of all new book sales in the United States.PHOTO: BLOOMBERG

FINANCIAL TIMES - When the pandemic began, I essentially locked myself in a room and wrote books. I have published two in 2021, with another due in spring. Plunging back into the world of publishing, and the mystery of what people read, I am marvelling at how much has changed.

In the old days, most books had brief lives before going out of print. As a teenager in the 1980s, I had sometimes worked in bookshops. When customers made arcane requests, we'd haul out a large red volume called Books In Print. Any title not in it was effectively dead.

Please or to continue reading the full article.

Get unlimited access to all stories at $0.99/month
  • Latest headlines and exclusive stories
  • In-depth analyses and award-winning multimedia content
  • Get access to all with our no-contract promotional package at only $0.99/month for the first 3 months*

*Terms and conditions apply.