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SA Partridge

@ Sunday Times Books LIVE

Youth lit trends

Ibby South Africa’s Kathy Madlener recently spoke to The Book Lounge’s Veruschka Louw (a fellow lover of YA) about trends in youth literature. (She also mentions me. Thanks Verushcka!)

Veruschka, what is your prediction for the next big trend in children’s literature?
‘Presently vampires are the big thing in children’s and teen literature, I think they will be replaced by myths and legends. No more romance, lots of excitement.’
Present favourite series along these lines are Rick Riordan’s Percy Jackson series and Terry Deary’s The Fire Thief.

Are children reading less in this digital age?
‘I think this is a parental thing’ If parents love reading, then children will pick up the habit. The more digital the parents become, the more the kids will follow suit.’

She emphasises the huge importance of children’s librarians: ‘If the parents aren’t keen on books, then they are the last bastion.’

Who is your present favourite children’s author?
‘Jerry Spinelli, the author of, among others, Stargirl, Loser and his latest Smiles to Go. I find I can identify with the feeling of being different from others that is a feature of so many of his characters.’

What are your feelings about the South African books on offer for young adults and teens?
‘SA teen books are like petrol stations in the Karoo, you are lucky if you find a good one – and the jacket designs are terrible!’ (Publishers, take note!)
Sally Partridge, author of Fuse and The Goblet Club, is my present favourite SA teen author.

We have so many wonderful SA illustrated books; which is your present favourite?
My Oupa Hoenders by Flip Hattingh. ‘Beautiful illustrations, rich text … well done to Tafelberg for taking a chance and stepping out of their usual mould.’

eBooks, will they spell the end of books as we know them?
‘Kindle is a gimmick, it will find its place, but real readers will always use paper,’ she says.

Read the original story here.


Recent comments:

  • <a href="" rel="nofollow">Louis Greenberg</a>
    Louis Greenberg
    March 8th, 2011 @10:53 #

    Sally's "what I'm reading" piece in The Times this morning was a lovely punt for Deadlands. She single-handedly made reading zombies cooler than reading vampires.

  • <a href="" rel="nofollow">Sally</a>
    March 8th, 2011 @11:06 #

    Thanks Louis!! I'm sure the vamps will make a come back at some point.

  • <a href="" rel="nofollow">Helen</a>
    March 9th, 2011 @02:43 #

    DAMMIT, I missed that piece in the Times. Sally, won't you snap it and post it on yr blog?


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