Broadcaster SVT reported on Wednesday that 37 percent of the Swedish population listened to an audiobook last year, a marked increase over the 20 percent who did the same in 2016.
While audiobook streaming services report that all categories of audiobooks have seen increased listenership, certain types of books are clearly leading the way.
“Amongst the listening public, genres such as romance, ‘feel good’ novels and eroticism are growing. We are thus seeing increased demand [from listeners] as well as an increase in the number of publishers who are putting out these types of books,” Anna Riklund, the head of content curation at audiobook streaming service Bookbeat, told SVT.
She said that the growing number of Swedes who want to listen to racy novels has led several publishers to launch imprints that focus exclusively on erotic literature.
Audiobook streaming service Storytel also reported increased interest in erotic and romance novels, particularly among female listeners. Listener numbers peak around Valentine’s Day and during the hot summer months.
Author Susanne Ahlenius, whose erotic novels include titles such as ‘Climax’ and ‘Lust 2.0’, said that the audiobook format is perfect for fans of the genre.
“You don’t have to sit with a paperback that shows what you are reading. No one knows what you’re listening to,” she told SVT.
Ahlenius said that her books are most successful when she “writes very explicitly and there is a lot of sex”.
“People like it hot,” she said.