Library Books and the North-South Divide

I came across this interesting little piece in the Telegraph on the books borrowed from libraries in different parts of the United Kingdom. It seems northerners prefer what they know while southerners follow fashion as dictated by Richard and Judy. Everybody, it seems, loves Harry Potter. It’s good that people are borrowing from libraries of course, but I can’t help feeling a little depressed by this tale of unadventurous readers:

A study of lending habits shows that Richard Madeley and his co-presenter and wife Judy Finnigan have had a “profound” effect on the books people choose to read.

But while libraries across the south of England illustrate a dogged following of the couple’s advice, further north, readers prefer crime thrillers and traditional romance novels.

The figures – compiled by Public Lending Right, which enables authors to receive payment each time a book is borrowed – show that across the country there is one book that is universally popular: Harry Potter & the Deathly Hallows by JK Rowling. [Link]