Image of an open book

Most Borrowed Books 2020


Details of the 20 books and authors borrowed most often from Irish public libraries in 2020 have been published by the Local Government Management Agency (LGMA).

The LGMA compiles the information as part of the Public Lending Remuneration (PLR) Scheme. The 20 eBooks and eAudiobooks borrowed most often from Irish Libraries via the Borrowbox service have also been published.

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.

Full details of the most borrowed authors and books are available at the link below.