Taylor who wrote the Vampyre Labyrinth series which tells the story of vampires in Yorkshire during World War 2 recently said he thinks children’s literature “has gone too far”!
Now, we might beg to wonder given the subject of his own novels, but this comment follows reviews of his vampire trilogy that said they were the most frightening pieces of literature that had ever been written for kids. This he says, is what has left him wanting to change direction; aiming for stories of adventure and challenge, rather than horror.
Funnily enough it was the writing of children that inspired Taylor for his Vampyre Labyrinth series. He visited schools to see what kids were interested in reading and found them quite obsessed with the darker side of literature.
You won’t be surprised to hear that as soon as Taylor’s comments hit the press, many authors and literary figures jumped to the defence of darker novels and revoked the idea of a grading system as a guideline to teachers and parents, which Taylor had recommended would be a good idea.
Carnegie award winner Patrick Ness thinks it would be irresponsible to ignore the intrigue in the darker side of life that so many young people are drawn to, stating that, "Teenagers look at this darkness all the time, and I always think if you're not addressing it in your fiction then you're abandoning them to face it themselves."
This is an interesting topic for debate and another point that is well made is the appeal of information that is not allowed. Perhaps when parents and teacher’s heads are turned, teenagers will read books certified 18 regardless. What do you think? Please let us know your thoughts below!