Thursday, December 04, 2014

What have I been saying? Listen up, people!

Thanks to the ever wonderful Jen Robinson for sharing this on her blog yesterday, from Scholastic:


Or, in my words, UNICORNS POOPING RAINBOWS! Anything, anything but the six books full of gloom and doom that I read last night. Even Mike Lupica succumbed to the terrible plague of having a tween boy spend an entire book grieving for his deceased brother. Humor? No, it's not.

Here was the buttload of depression from last night:
  • a boy grieving for his brother
  • a boy with horrific bad luck who is struck by lightning
  • a boy whose father is an injured and unemployed illegal immigrant AND his sister has cancer
  • a family whose parents sell everything and make them live in a van because they believe a religious fanatic that the world will end
  • an almost 600 page long fantasy book that... I don't even know. 
The one small, redeeming light was Veera Hiranandani's Lunch Will Never Be the Same, which was fun and delightful. I gave it five stars because ALL THE PARENTS WERE ALIVE.

Will Scholastic's offerings reflect their findings? Although this study is right, I'm rather disappointed in the small number of people they surveyed!


Anne Bennett said...

I am always looking for the PERFECT book for my students! Thanks for this.

Jen Robinson said...

Just goes to show you are on the cutting edge in spotting what kids want, Karen. While I doubt the number would be exactly 70% with a bigger sample size, I do think there's something important in the message that kids want lighter books. My daughter is four and she's already a bit demoralized by the whole lost parent thing in the movies she watches.

Jim Randolph said...

That's exactly why most of what I buy is directly from teacher or student requests. The only way people read more is if you get what they WANT, not what gets starred reviews (and sometimes the two overlap).

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