This morning, I attended a great discussion at the Pop Top Stage of the Exhibit Hall. I was so excited to hear some of my favorite middle grade authors talking about their craft and what they feel they can and cannot do in their books. A panel of six female middle grade authors discussed their “awkward” moments from childhood. They then went on to discuss how they write middle grade fiction. )For purposes of the discussion, “middle grade” was defined as the transition period between being a kid and growing up.)
Middle grade novels allow authors to deal with the harsh realities of life but show the silver-lining and the hopefulness of a child. The authors agreed that middle grade books should give readers HOPE. These books provide educators and parents with a way to address the tough topics with which children deal. We can’t ignore these tough topics because they are real, so authors help to express the issue and help children understand it.
Children develop EMPATHY through books!
An added bonus was the news that there will be a sequel to award-winning author Kelly Yang’s Front Desk!