Yesterday the husband and I took Miss 13 to Barnes and Noble and I was shocked by the books that are aimed at teen readers. Honest to goodness, the Teen Non~Fiction Reading Section looked like a menagerie of soft core porn. Now, I’m far from being a prude but I do think it’s ridiculous when a teen reader who is not into vampires, werewolves, witches or scantily clad mean girls can’t find a book to read.
Miss 13 is an avid reader and has been reading several books a week since she was in elementary school. Usually she reads classic literature or books by Beverly Cleary and Barbara Park but today she thought she’d try something new. But all she kept seeing were vampire books. My daughter really isn’t into that genre. Poor Miss 13 wandered the Teen Non~Fiction Reading Section for about 30 minutes before she gave up and made her way over to the books for kids in grades 4~6. She ended up selecting Where the Sidewalk Ends by Shel Silverstein.
I remember when I was her age, I was totally into the Nancy Drew and Hardy Boys mysteries. I read a Wrinkle in Time and I also read The Far Pavillions. The closest I came to gothic horror was Wuthering Heights. The point is that I had choices when I went into the bookstore, not everything was geared towards a specific set of teens.
I realize that blood~sucking~live~and~die~for~love gothic romance is all the rage but how about offering a little variety, it just might open up a whole new world to teen readers. So I ask you, what’s a parent to do when her daughter wants to read but the topics aren’t appealing?