Irish authors, classics and crime: most borrowed library books in 2020 revealed

    Most borrowed books of 2020 revealed in lead up to #IrelandReads day, this Thursday 25th February.

    Details of the most popular authors and books borrowed from Irish public libraries in 2020 have been published by the Local Government Management Agency (LGMA), ahead of Ireland Reads Day, a national day of reading this Thursday, February 25th.

    Most borrowed books

    Seventeen of the twenty most borrowed books in 2020 are children’s titles with Roderick Hunt the most popular author and the classic Mr Men collection proving the most popular book. Classic stories remain among children’s favourites with renowned authors such as Enid Blyton, Roger Hargreaves and Roald Dahl in the top twenty list of children’s authors, alongside Daisy Meadows, Francesca Simon, and Jacqueline Wilson.

    When books aimed at adults are separated out, James Patterson tops the list of the 20 most popular authors for the third time in a row, while Blue Moon by Lee Child was the most borrowed adult title in 2020.  It seems we all still love a good mystery with other thriller and crime writers such as Michael Connelly, Liz Nugent, Harlan Coben and Agatha Christie among the most popular authors with library members.


    Unsurprisingly, given the phenomenal success of the TV adaptation, Normal People by Sally Rooney was the most downloaded eBook by library members, while Becoming by Michelle Obama was the most popular eAudiobook.

    Irish authors are in high demand with library members; 11 of the 20 most popular adult books are by Irish authors while 5 of the 20 most popular authors for adults are Irish authors.

    Fifteen of the twenty most popular adult books are by female authors, and female authors are also in the majority in the most popular eBook and eAudiobook lists.

    The impact of the Dublin City Libraries ‘One City One Book’ initiative is clear. The 2020 One City One Book choice Tatty by Christine Dwyer Hickey is included in the top 20 most borrowed books for adults, eBooks and eAudiobooks lists.

    Most borrowed books

    Top 20 books borrowed in Irish public libraries 2020
    1
    My Mr. Men Complete Collection
    Roger Hargreaves
    2
    Diary of a Wimpy Kid: The Getaway
    Jeff Kinney
    3
    Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Double Down
    Jeff Kinney
    4
    Under the Hawthorn Tree
    Marita Conlon-McKenna
    5
    Blue Moon
    Lee Child
    6
    Dog Man: Dog Man and Cat Kid
    Dav Pilkey
    7
    Wonder
    R J Palacio
    8
    Tom Gates: What Monster
    Liz Pichon
    9
    Diary of an Awesome Friendly Kid: Rowley Jefferson’s Journal
    Jeff Kinney
    10
    Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone
    J K Rowling
    11
    Dog Man: A Tale of Two Kitties
    Dav Pilkey
    12
    Diary of a Wimpy Kid
    Jeff Kinney
    13
    The Family Gift
    Cathy Kelly
    14
    Fing
    David Walliams; illustrated by Quentin Blake
    15
    Tom Gates: Spectacular School Trip (Really)
    Liz Pichon
    16
    Bad Dad
    David Walliams; illustrated by Tony Ross
    17
    The Night Fire
    Michael Connelly
    18
    Mr Stink
    David Walliams; Illustrated by Quentin Blake
    19
    Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Dog Days
    Jeff Kinney
    20
    Diary of a Wimpy Kid: Rodrick Rules
    Jeff Kinney

    Adult books – Top 20 books borrowed in Irish public libraries 2020
    1
    Blue Moon
    Lee Child
    2
    The Family Gift
    Cathy Kelly
    3
    The Night Fire
    Michael Connelly
    4
    Becoming
    Michelle Obama
    5
    Skin Deep
    Liz Nugent
    6
    Once, Twice, Three Times an Aisling
    Emer McLysaght and Sarah Breen
    7
    Our Little Cruelties
    Liz Nugent
    8
    Tatty
    Christine Dwyer Hickey
    9
    The Beekeeper of Aleppo
    Christy Lefteri
    10
    The Guardians
    Jon Grisham
    11
    Overcoming
    Vicky Phelan
    12
    The Testaments
    Margaret Atwood
    13
    A Keeper
    Graham Norton
    14
    Normal People
    Sally Rooney
    15
    The Official Driver Theory Test
    Department of Transport
    16
    The Birthday Party
    Roisin Meaney
    17
    Oh My God, What a Complete Aisling
    Emer McLysaght and Sarah Breen
    18
    Olive, Again
    Elizabeth Strout
    19
    Seven Letters
    Sinead Moriarty
    20
    Where the Crawdads Sing
    Delia Owens

    Top 20 authors/contributors borrowed in Irish public libraries 2020
    1
    Roderick Hunt
    2
    Roger Hargreaves
    3
    Daisy Meadows
    4
    Julia Donaldson
    5
    Michael Morpurgo
    6
    Enid Blyton
    7
    Francesca Simon
    8
    Jacqueline Wilson
    9
    David Walliams
    10
    J K Rowling
    11
    Jeff Kinney
    12
    Adam Blade
    13
    James Patterson
    14
    Dav Pilkey
    15
    Roald Dahl
    16
    Holly Webb
    17
    Eoin Colfer
    18
    Marita Conlon McKenna
    19
    Dr Seuss
    20
    Lincoln Peirce

    Adult – Top 20 authors/contributors borrowed in Irish public libraries 2020
    1
    James Patterson
    2
    Lee Child
    3
    John Boyne
    4
    Nora Roberts
    5
    Anthony Horowitz
    6
    Roddy Doyle
    7
    Agatha Christie
    8
    John Grisham
    9
    Michael Connelly
    10
    Danielle Steel
    11
    Maeve Binchy
    12
    Harlan Coben
    13
    Sheila O’Flanagan
    14
    David Baldacci
    15
    Stephen King
    16
    Jeffrey Archer
    17
    Jodi Picoult
    18
    Cathy Kelly
    19
    J D Robb (Nora Roberts pseudonym)
    20
    Jojo Moyes

    Top 20 Adult Audiobooks Borrowed in Irish Public Libraries 2020 via BorrowBox
    1
    Becoming
    Michelle Obama
    2
    The Beekeeper of Aleppo
    Christy Lefteri
    3
    Tattooist of Auschwitz
    Heather Morris
    4
    The Man Who Didn’t Call
    Rosie Walsh
    5
    The Testaments
    Margaret Atwood
    6
    This is Going to Hurt
    Adam Kay
    7
    Nightboat to Tangier
    Kevin Barry
    8
    Nine Perfect Strangers
    Liane Moriarty
    9
    Tatty
    Christine Dwyer Hickey
    10
    The Handmaid’s Tale
    Margaret Atwood
    11
    The President is Missing
    Bill Clinton and James Patterson
    12
    House Across the Street
    Lesley Pearse
    13
    Short History of Nearly Everything
    Bill Bryson
    14
    Into the Water
    Paula Hawkins
    15
    Cilka’s Journey
    Heather Morris
    16
    Help Me!
    Marianne Power
    17
    Fool Me Once
    Harlan Coben
    18
    The Thursday Murder Club
    Richard Osman
    19
    House of Names
    Colm Tóibin
    20
    Gotta Get Theroux This
    Louis Theroux

    Top 20 Adult eBooks borrowed in Irish Public Libraries 2020 via BorrowBox
    1
    Normal People
    Sally Rooney
    2
    The Man who Didn’t Call
    Rosie Walsh
    3
    The Beekeeper of Aleppo
    Christy Lefteri
    4
    Becoming
    Michelle Obama
    5
    Night Boat to Tangier
    Kevin Barry
    6
    Conversations with Friends
    Sally Rooney
    7
    Girl, Woman, Other
    Bernardine Evaristo
    8
    The Catch
    T.M. Logan
    9
    The Christmas Train
    David Baldacci
    10
    The Last Mile
    David Baldacci
    11
    The Secrets of Primrose Square
    Claudia Carroll
    12
    The Tattooist of Auschwitz
    Heather Morris
    13
    Guest List
    Lucy Foley
    14
    The Man from St Petersburg
    Ken Follett
    15
    Cilka’s Journey
    Heather Morris
    16
    Girl in the Woods
    Patricia MacDonald
    17
    Tatty
    Christine Dwyer Hickey
    18
    Unsuitable Match
    Joanna Trollope
    19
    Help Me!
    Marianne Power
    20
    The Holiday
    T.M. Logan

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