The other day I got to thinking about what I liked most about children’s stories when I was kid, and as far back as I can remember I’ve always enjoyed the stories where the child protagonist isn’t dealing with “kid” problems.
For whatever reason these books about school, bullies, growing up etc(no matter the genre) have never interested me and they still don’t. I don’t want ordinary, I want wonder. I’d rather read about a child facing an uncommon problem/conflict rather than an ordinary one. The juxtaposition of innocence and reality compliment each other nicely.
I’m probably in the minority here, but I think too often we sell children short on what they can do and instead revert back to westernized comfort zones. For me the best part of reading books is not seeing myself in a story, it’s seeing someone else. It’s the act of stepping out of my skin and into another individual, sharing in his/her struggles and triumphs. All around the world their are children who are facing war, hunger, natural disaster and disease, perhaps we would all be better humans if we could sit down, and for a few pages “see what cannot be seen.”