Just to counteract the doom and gloom that usually surrounds the topic of today's children/teens and books, it's worth taking a look at yesterday's GalleyCat (the popular book blog at mediabistro.com.)
They link to an earlier post on their site by author and McSweeney's founder Dave Eggers. Eggers (whom Esquire magazine recently added to its list of the world's most influential people), calls the insistence that kids are less literate today "a willful kind of ignorance."
Eggers goes on to state that, "juvenile book sales have shown compound annual growth of 4.6 percent for hardcover books and 2.1 percent for paperbacks... but still we cluck with acknowledgment when some pundit tells us that books are being crushed by an all-powerful digital junta."
Young adult author Lorie Ann Grover responded to Egger's post with an e-mail about 6,000-member readergirlz social network which she co-created. Grover writes about the passion for books that these young readers share.
The GalleyCat post went on to mention GuysLitWire, a social networking site for boys to talk about their favorite books and concludes that, "[B]ooks sites like these two give us hope that the naysayers have simply lost touch with an audience (a bunch of audiences, really) that still exists and will continue to exist."
Here's hoping that they're right!