GOOD PICKS FROM GOODBOOKS — 20 MARCH 2018

GOOD PICKS FROM GOODBOOKS — 20 MARCH 2018

Ready for some more kid-lit goodness from around cyberspace? Let’s start with something in celebration of International Women’s Day. Women who change the world were, of course, little girls once. Young India Books selects five books about such inspirational youngsters—all fictional, but all with the potential to inspire the children in our lives, and maybe us too.

Meghna Chaudhury and Alishya Almeida are two more women who are changing the world. In 2016, this duo came up with a plan to “[interrupt] prejudices in spaces of everyday learning” and thus was born The Irrelevant Project. Their medium of choice was fiction, and they have come out with a set of books that looks at negative stereotypes and enables children to identify and question biases. The Irrelevant Project and their wonderful work was recently featured in Vagabomb.

Independent publishing houses have been at the forefront of diverse children’s publishing in India. If you are still unconvinced about the quality of Indian kid-lit, here are 24 reasons from the Hindu’s weekend edition that prove that you are quite wrong.

For those of us in the field of entertaining children, Arvind Gupta’s Toys from Trash has been a well-known and well-loved web destination. This engineer-turned-educator, recently awarded the Padma Shri (and about time too), speaks to Scroll.in, about why letting children break things is essential.

Authors often tend to get a larger piece of the limelight in children’s publishing compared to their illustrator collaborators. Yet every so often an artist comes along who leaves their indelible imprint—such as the Gond artist Bhajju Shyam. Gita Wolf of Tara books pays her tribute to this Padma Shri awardee.

To round up, here’s something a little further afield: a Facebook post from KidlitWomen, whose aim is to call out gender inequities in the children’s literature community. Author Shannon Hale, in an incisive piece, talks about the deep-seated gender prejudices that exist about the books children read, and why they are there in the first place.

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“For a teacher or librarian faced with dozens of books to read, a good book review website is as essential as maps are for geographers.”

Anil Menon - Writer
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“Indian children’s books rarely get the kind of publicity they deserve in the popular or social media. Websites like Goodbooks plug the gap by not letting a single Indian children’s book of merit slip through the cracks. Most people would not even know about the books available in the market if not for a resource like this.”

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“Book review sites like Goodbooks are a wonderful resource for locating theme-based or issue-based children’s books to enrich the learning experience in the classroom and at home.”

Asha Nehemiah - Children's Writer
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