How far is too far in teen fiction? | Event!!

Hi guys,

I have just received this in my mailbox and will definitely attend, anyone else want to join me? This subject is just so important and causes lots of debates and Twitter campaigns so it will be really good to see this panel discuss it!

Boundaries: How far is too far in teen fiction?

Tuesday 5th July
6.30 for 7.00 pm start

Embankment rooms
80 Strand

Members – free
Non-members - £5

“Contemporary fiction for teens is rife with explicit abuse, violence and depravity”
This recent comment from Wall Street Journal columnist Meghan Cox Gurdon has cause uproar in the international publishing community. The debate surrounding boundaries in teen literature has raged since the days of Judy Blume and earlier – but even in today’s high-speed media culture, in which sex, drugs and rock and roll are par for the course, do publishers and gatekeepers still have a responsibility to censor material?

Joy Court is one of the UK’s most influential children’s and young people’s librarians. In addition to her job as a librarian, she has been the chair of the YLG, is a co-ordinator for the CILIP Carnegie and Kate Greenaway Awards & Greenaway Medals, and reviews for ReadingZone.

Shannon Park is Executive Editor for fiction at Puffin Books, having worked on the Primary Literacy list at Collins and at Random House Children’s Books as a Commissioning Editor. She has worked with a diverse range of authors, including Anna Perera, Anthony McGowan, Phil Earle, Lucy and Stephen Hawking and Jeremy Strong. Her favourite books for teenagers (other than the ones she’s worked on, of course!) include The Catcher in the Rye, How I Live Now, The Book Thief, Out of Shadows and Before I Die.

Bali Rai is the author of over twenty books about teenagers, including (un)arranged marriage, Rani & Sukh and City of Ghosts. He spends much of his time working with young people in schools across the UK and abroad, talking about his work and teaching creative writing. Many of his books tackle difficult issues that reflect real life for modern British teenagers - warts and all. His latest book, Killing Honour, has just been published. It is an honest and often brutal portrayal of honour-based violence.

Julie Randles has worked in the children’s book industry for nearly twenty years - in both publishing and retailing - and is currently Managing Director of Scholastic Book Clubs, which sells books to children, teachers and parents through schools.

This event will be a panel discussion with room for questions throughout.

About: The Children’s Book Circle is a lively discussion forum for people involved in children’s books. Regular meetings provide the perfect environment in which to exchange ideas. Founded in 1962 as an informal association of children’s book editors, the CBC has expanded to embrace anyone with a professional interest in children’s books. See for details of our other events, how to get on the mailing list, and membership.


  1. I am SO hoping to be there - I just need to sort out someone to babysit the Catnipper!

  2. I wish I lived in London... I look forward to hearing what you think of it. It sounds like an awesome event!

  3. This sounds so fantastic (and I love Shannon!) I wish I could go. Please tell us all about it?

  4. wow - this definitely sounds like it will be a lively discussion. Hope you enjoy it and find it useful!

  5. Sounds like a really interesting discussion event. If only I wasn't crazy from school overload right now. I cannot wait until we break for summer and then I can finally catch up with you.