But what books do children actually like?

This article is from 2011

The kids are all write

Never mind publishers and literary critics, what are the readers' favourites?

Of course, stuffy literary critics shouldn't always have the final say. Kelly Apter finds out which authors actual children (including List critics' own) are getting excited about

Poppy Apter, 14
I like Malorie Blackman because she writes about things that are happening in the world, and how the characters feel about them is the same way real people would. The stories are interesting and I always want to read more. Her books are good for people my age because the stories are not too simple, but not too hard to follow either. I have read Hacker, Thief!, Pig Heart Boy, all of the Noughts & Crosses series, and liked them all.

I also like Jacqueline Wilson because her stories are usually about young girls and their problems, which is helpful and interesting to me and other people of a similar age. I particular enjoyed Lily Alone because the story could be true (mostly!) and I liked the characters.

Tilly Bradley Bevan, 10
I love Liz Kessler's Emily Windsnap books. She turns into a mermaid and the books are interesting, telling how she tries to keep this a secret. She only does it at night! There's quite a bit of suspense in the books, which makes me want to read on. Keeping her secret about being a mermaid causes Emily lots of problems and there are some funny bits in the books when she tries to stop people finding out. It's interesting that she has other problems in her life as well as a shiny tail!

Nancy Donaldson, 9
I like the Flat Stanley books by Jeff Brown because they are funny and exciting, and when you read them you can see the scene in your head. My favourite character is Stanley because he is brave, and kind to his brother Arthur and other people. I love Scott Nash's illustrations because they have lots of detail. My favourite books are Flat Stanley, Invisible Stanley and Stanley, Flat Again!

I also like the Horrid Henry books by Francesca Simon because they're funny and so are the names of people, like Moody Margaret and Beefy Burt. I like the pictures and the fact there are girls in them, even though they sound like boys' books. My favourite stories are 'Horrid Henry's Sick Day' and 'Horrid Henry's Nits'.

Theo Bradley Bevan, 8
I love Eoin Colfer because he is a talented writer. I would say he has a great imagination! I really like graphic novels and he is very good at writing these too. I like the character sketches. Artemis Fowl is calm and intelligent. I also really like all the detail the writer puts in his books and the character names are really good! I love all the adventures and travels to interesting places. I learnt a lot about different places from reading the books.

Daniel Mason Bone, 6
I like the black and white illustrations and smudgy pages in Andy Stanton's Mr Gum books. The stories make me laugh and Alan Taylor (a gingerbread man) is my favourite character. My favourite book in the series is Mr Gum and the Secret Hideout because the character Ben shouts out 'surprise' every time he appears and that makes me happy. My favourite bit in You're A Bad Man, Mr Gum! is when the author tricks you into thinking it's the end of the story when it isn't; that makes me giggle!

Tansy Bradley Bevan 4
I love Charlie and Lola by Lauren Child. I love the pictures in the books. They are very funny. Charlie is like my big brother: he's very bossy! My brother says I am like Lola but I will never not ever eat a tomato!

Andy Stanton

‘If a kid has an interesting haircut I might whip out my harmonica and do a song about them', says Andy Stanton. And surely that’s worth paying money for! Join us for a madcap hour of Mr Gum mayhem involving all your favourite characters. Today Andy will be introduced by his Granny Cardie (if we can keep her off the…

Eoin Colfer

Join author of Artemis Fowl series Eoin Colfer as he talks fairies, centaurs, genius teenage school boys, friendships, and a lot of other nonsense – a wonderfully diverting way to pass the time!

Eoin Colfer with Mark Billingham

The bestselling scribe of the DI Thorne novels hosts this event featuring Eoin Colfer, who has put his massively successful Artemis Fowl series to one side for a debut switch into the crime genre. Plugged focuses on Dan, a New Jersey-based Irishman working as a bouncer in a seedy club. When the hostess Connie is murdered…

Fun with Flat Stanley

Come and meet Flat Stanley and hear about his adventures. How did he get so flat? Who would you send a Flat Stanley postcard to? The Flat Stanley Project is all about making friends around the world. Come and find out more and have the chance to create your own Stanley postcard.

Horrid Henry with Francesca Simon

You may not want Horrid Henry as your son or brother but how much fun would it be to have him in class? Francesca Simon describes his latest adventures and misadventures with all his friends and accomplices, from hapless Weepy William and Perfect Peter to Inky Ian and – of course! – Henry himself.

Jacqueline Wilson

Jacqueline always wanted to be a writer and wrote her first ‘novel’ when she was only 9. Since those early days she’s gone on to write over forty books, won many prestigious awards and created iconic characters such as Tracey Beaker. Her latest novel is Lily Alone. Come and hear all! Please note: the book signing after…

Liz Kessler

Liz is well-known for her tales of mermaid Emily Windsnap but her latest story plays around with time and explores how a family copes with disaster. On her way to visit her best friend Autumn, Jenni suddenly finds she's been transported forward exactly one year. How does she cope and what exactly has taken place during…

Malorie Blackman

Award-winning author Malorie Blackman writes books for older readers which tackle tough issues and challenging subjects. But it is proof of her skill as a writer that it is done with great sensitivity and the story, rather than the issue, takes precedence. Don’t miss this opportunity to hear her talk about her work, her…

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