Infographic: Who Reads the Most? A Guide to Global Reading Habits

The following infographic from Global English Editing that focuses on reading habits around the world.

Reading is an activity that enriches our lives. As well as providing access to vast amounts of information and knowledge, we read for entertainment. Good stories provide an escape where your imagination can lift you away.

When we read, not only are we improving our working memory, but research has shown that it makes us feel better and more positive too. Science has shown that reading has some amazing health benefits, including helping with depression, cutting stress, and reducing the chances of developing Alzheimer’s later in life.

As you can see, the infographic says that the biggest-selling book in history is Don Quixote (ahead of the Bible? I doubt it).

It also shows that while countries such as India, Thailand, and China spend the most hours reading per week, they are not the most “literate” countries in terms of having access to a generous number of libraries, newspapers, and computers. In that regard, Finland, Norway, and Iceland are world beaters.

Nate Hoffelder

View posts by Nate Hoffelder
Nate Hoffelder is the founder and editor of The Digital Reader. He has been blogging about indie authors since 2010 while learning new tech skills weekly. He fixes author sites, and shares what he learns on The Digital Reader's blog. In his spare time, he fosters dogs for A Forever Home, a local rescue group.


  1. Dazrin16 May, 2017

    So, on average Americans read 5.7 hours per week (296 hrs per year), but they only read 12 books a year. So, 24 hours per book?

    Something seems off about these numbers. I suspect the hours per week number. It doesn’t take an average reader 24 hours to read a James Patterson or Danielle Steel or David Baldacci book. The audio books for these are less than 1/2 of that length and almost everyone reads faster than someone can narrate a book.

    (I am omitting Paula Hawkins from the top 4 NYT best sellers from 2016 since I am not familiar with her books. Maybe her readers make up the difference but I doubt it.)

  2. Mein Coaching16 September, 2019

    […] Denn der Buchmarkt boomt nach wie vor überall auf der Welt. Deutschland ist laut Statistik ( auf Platz 8 der […]


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