In my review I said that my boys love The Princess in Black books, and that is totally true. But I could see why some boys wouldn't want to read them. As a culture, we often discourage boys from reading books about girls.
Shannon Hale has just hosted an awesome series on her blog. She's talking about Stories for All, and especially about letting boys read books about girls without shaming them. I have to say that I knew this was kind of a problem, but I grew up in a home where we were encouraged to read everything. It wasn't my problem. It's only been in the past few years, as my oldest son has gotten a little bit older, that I've started noticing the social pressure for him to avoid doing girly things. I don't know if I cared before, but now, I think it's personal.
|I took the kids on a hike the other day. They insisted on bringing books along.|
So, anyway, I'm going to link to a couple more of my favorite pieces on Shannon's blog. All of them were good, but I particularly liked this one by a librarian who conducted an experiment, and the one by a young author whose book has a pink cover, and this one that starts with Ramona the Pest, and especially this one, by a guy who wrote a book with a girl as the main character.
For further reading, I definitely recommend #storiesforall on twitter.
I hope you'll look into this, whether you have sons or daughters, and whether or not you're a parent.
Have you observed kids being told they should stick to books that are marketed to their gender? Do you think it's a problem?
I'd love to talk about it.