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Books, Music, & Video

Political book sales get bounce from Marlon Bundo

by Arye Zucker - April 25, 2018

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The biggest political book of the past week is a children’s title that features a gay bunny, and it is outselling James Comey’s tell-all, “A Higher Loyalty: Truth, Lies, and Leadership” by a factor of 11.4.

Last week, John Oliver announced the release of his new children’s book “Last Week Tonight with John Oliver Presents: A Day in the Life of Marlon Bundo”, a direct response to “Marlon Bundo’s A Day in the Life of the Vice President”, another children’s book, about Mike Pence’s family rabbit. According to new data from Slice Intelligence, Oliver’s book has outsold Pence’s by almost 28 times since their respective release dates, which were one day apart.

An earlier release date has helped "Fire and Fury" stay atop the sales list

While a sellout first week by Last Week Tonight's book overshadowed Pence's and Comey's offerings

Not all child’s play as hard-hitting political books make an impact of their own

The most popular title among the four books we studied, however remains “Fire and Fury: Inside the Trump White House.” Michael Wolff’s incendiary account of the Presidency comprised 73 percent of all online sales of “Fire and Fury”, “A Higher Loyalty”, and the Marlon Bundo books.

Fire and Fury” was the hottest political book until roughly two and a half months later, when former FBI Director James Comey’s “A Higher Loyalty: Truth, Lies, and Leadership” attained the mantle of no.1 selling book on Amazon, only to be unseated the very next day by Oliver’s release.

Hot political books show crossover potential

Of the people who bought more than one of the four books, 68 percent bought both “Fire and Fury” and Oliver’s book, and 22 percent bought “Fire and Fury” and Comey’s. Five percent bought both Pence’s and Oliver’s bunny-centric children’s books, and 4.5 percent bought both Comey’s book and Oliver’s book.

“Fire and Fury” and “A Higher Loyalty” buyers skew older

The largest demographic of buyers for both “Fire and Fury” and “A Higher Loyalty” are 65 years and older. Over 53 percent of “A Higher Loyalty” buyers were 55 and older, compared to 43 percent of buyers for “Fire and Fury” whose popularity is more evenly distributed by age. Both Marlon Bundo books skew younger, with 25-34-year-olds making up 32 percent of “Marlon Bundo’s A Day in the Life of the Vice President” buyers, and 28 percent of “A Day in the Life of Marlon Bundo” buyers.

Heavy-hitting political books score better with the older demographics

As Last Week Tonight's and Pence's children book skew toward a younger buying audience

About this data

With a panel of over 5.5 million online shoppers, Slice Intelligence gives the most detailed, and accurate digital commerce data available, and is reported daily.

Slice Intelligence is the only service to measure digital commerce directly from the consumer, across all retailers, at the item level, and over time. Our retailer-independent methodology precisely measures commerce as it happens. By extracting detailed information from hundreds of millions of aggregated and anonymized e-receipts, Slice can map the entire Purchase Graph, connecting each and every consumer to all their purchases.

Slice gets its data from e-receipts – not a browser, app or software installed by the end-user – so its measurement reflects comprehensive shopping behavior across multiple devices, over time, which are key in an increasingly omnichannel retail world. Slice Intelligence is the exclusive e-commerce data provider for NPD’s Checkout Tracking e-commerce service.