Do YA Books Cross Borders?

Posted on 23/07/2012 by


Me: Arkem’s spare room — or what he calls my room — is filled with books.
Rick: Very sensible of him.
Me: I thought so. He says he knows what the Kandaces like, and this was less creepy than trying to find fake Ricks to populate the room with. He also says that may be the first time anyone has ever called him sensible.

So I was in a moderately nerdy bookstore in Mountain View yesterday (because I am a bit weird and like visiting bookstores when travelling). And while I was being sad because the YA section was all of two shelves and the kid’s section got a whole room* I noticed something interesting — the books were almost entirely different to the ones you’d find on the shelves at home.

The biggest names were the same: Rowling and Collins and Clare and Meyer. But beyond that it was a whole new world. Which is not something I’ve noticed while travelling before (and the SF&F section was pretty similar to what we have in Oz) so now I’m wondering if it was just this bookstore or if this is indicative of a larger trend. Do YA books not cross borders as much? Or is it just the contemporary YA books that don’t read cross-country? (Most of the familiar texts were also SF&F, which could be coincidence, but might not be…)

It is a small mystery. So I’m wondering, have any of you ever noticed anything like this?


* Clearly I should be aiming at a younger audience. I certainly read enough books aimed at toddlers and primary schoolers. Which is, of course, why we stopped in the kid’s room so I could I read an Oliver Jeffers book to Arkem and explain why penguins are awesome.


Posted in: Kandace, Research