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Kids and Family Reading Report

Kids and Family Reading Report

It’s US based - but interesting none the less.

The annual Scholastic Kids and Family Reading Report analyses data from 2,500+ parents and kids - asks questions and crunches the numbers to give an indication of where things are.

Only 51% of children said they love or like reading books for fun (That was 58% in 2012, and 60% in 2010.)

The report found that reading enjoyment drops after the age of eight.

And why the steep drop - particularly in boys? - sixty per cent who enjoyed reading more when they were younger put this down to there being “so many other things that I now enjoy more than reading”

What makes a ‘frequent reader’? 

The report found that a six to 11-year-old is more likely to be a frequent reader if they are currently read aloud to at home, if they were also read aloud to five to seven days a week before starting nursery, and if they are less likely to use a computer for fun.


I’m still reading the report, (sssh, it’s early), have a look here.

Late Night Double Feature: Ex_Machina and It Follows

Late Night Double Feature: Ex_Machina and It Follows

This isn’t a review.

The pic is the calling card that the studio PR team handed to everyone after the screening of It Follows (super creepy 70’s nostalgia horror) The team went all out too - as a kid on screen screamed of being followed by a woman in a yellow dress that no one else could see, a woman in a yellow dress stalked the dark cinema. (Successfully creeping EVERYONE out) After the film there was a tweet: “Much like Jaws isn’t about the shark. It Follows isn’t about what is following you.” The right combination of fear, humour and sex (you’ll see why).

Before that there was pizza and beer. And prior to that we were bundled into a screening of Ex_Machina. Alex Garland’s stylised robot movie. The science and invention of iRobot, Bladerunner and AI - with the look and feel of 2014’s Lucy or, maybe, Her.  Thought, sex, style, passion, humour … and Oscar Isaacs as the faultlessly charismatic villain. Ex_Machina is the precursor to The Matrix - the laboratory moment where the machines first discover themselves.

Both DEFINITELY on the radar.


Robert Dunbar: January Blues

Robert Dunbar: January Blues

Catherine Doyle, Nick Lake and Steve Watkins go under the microscope of Robert Dunbar in the Irish Times - Teen/YA getting the first treatment of the year.

Vendetta - Doyle’s debut - takes the prize of most interesting review:

Doyle skilfully prepares her readers for a narrative that blends thriller and romance, building tension in the former and accelerating the physical intensity of the latter.

“What emerges ultimately is a tale of two interlinking families, their misdemeanours, their secrets and lies and, above all, their conflicting loyalties and urge for revenge: the Montagues and the Capulets come to mind. The plot’s numerous twists and turns are sometimes predictable, sometimes unexpected, but, in gener”l, this is a novel that will keep its readers turning the pages.”

And most importantly, a welcome to the ranks of Irish writing:

“Irish young-adult literature has, in the person of Doyle, a welcome addition to its ranks.”

A mile wide, an inch deep.

A mile wide, an inch deep.

Ev Williams’ has the web made. This site is 9 next month - nine years of reader statistics and analytics, webs and flows (see what I did there?), conversations and opportunities.

Outside the usual posts of articles, news, links, books and movies I’ve set a new challenge. To post something real, every day - a photograph, a ticket, a conversation… whatever, something that isn’t set by a news agenda. That is seen, felt, read or heard first hand.

Roll on Monday.




(Pic taken in Fitzrovia … it’s a real place in London but it still sounds like a made up kingdom. “Have you met Elmer, Prince of Fitzrovia?”)




First books of 2015

First books of 2015

Ignoring the fact that it’s been well over six months since the last time I logged in (new city, new job and some INCREDIBLE projects to come over the next 18 months) …

Happy New Year!

First blood for the year … the genius Ali Smith’s Artful (adapted from four lectures), Cary Elwes light hearted As You Wish (every thing you need to know about being a dread pirate AND MORE) and the sequel to Sally Green’s Half Bad, Half Wild (and it’s good, better than book one and you have MUCH to look forward to.)

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And because it’s always easier to talk about the book you’re reading … just about to finish the unstoppable voice of Susin Nielsen: