When adults select books for children, we want to pick out good ones. The problem is, we’re not always sure what a “good book” means and just tend to choose be beneficial and desirable for young readers. We forge ahead, sometimes unaware of how we use to determine what is “good.”
Adults choose the books according to a standard- a criteria that we may not be aware exactly why we make our choices, considering the biases we respond to most: The lessons the books teach, those large colorful illustrations, the absence of harshness, scariness and swearing, the simple vocabulary used, the familiar content presented to the schema of the child and the political correctness it has to offer in which are sometimes narrow and misguided, a reason to be a problem within how they choose.
For some people however, it is a necessary thing to consider on how readers respond to a certain book in order to recognize whether it is “good” or “not”. However this raises the different perspectives presented upon the books since all people think in different ways. How the readers are attracted to a book depends on the rationalizing ability of their minds regarding a topic. Therefore considering a fact that the “goodness” of a book depends on how the reader comments upon it.
The quality of the book is reflected from how a critical analysis evaluates the book’s style and language, character, plot, setting, theme, tone, point of view, illustrations, mood, pacing, design and layout, and accuracy. All of which are important to consider. Critics focus mostly on how words are chosen and arranged, unique and believable techniques of characterizations, the total outcome of the story as the conflict takes place, and how the author strategizes upon the manipulation of the readers’ imagination to make the emotional reality true.
The taste of how readers choose a genre of a story is also varied. For one thing, the multi-awarded Wind in Willows is judged to be quality literature for children as it delineates the four main characters, contains satisfying action sequences and is told in a rich, varied language. However, some children tend to not find themselves engrossed in the story when they tried to read it.
Goosebumps books on the other hand had won no literary awards and yet thousands of children sail through the series and report that each Goosebumps story is a good book, disregarding also the fact that some adults may think that children that read such formulaic, shallow stories should at least feel shame for doing so.
In the end, the question of “good book” does not depend on awards it claimed, titles that have proven themselves overtime and the highest sale figures. The only list we can trust without reservation is our own.