55327_girl-writing_mdIn the previous blog, I suggested that I thought Abercrombie’s stark Half a King would produce more politically intelligent and socially conscious readers than Monette’s warm and fuzzy novel The Goblin Emperor. Continuing along this line, I’m wondering which of these books is likely to be read by boys and which by girls? In other words, will a librarian suggest to a teen girl that she read Half a King? Will a librarian suggest to a teen boy that they read The Goblin Emperor? Or will it go the other way around?

Somehow I expect boys will be steered to the harsher novel and girls to the warm, fuzzy one. This type of overprotection is a curious development after all the days of pushing girls to be more competitive in sports and more active in business, math and engineering fields. It’s true that Monette’s novel was delightful and well-written, with attractive and responsible characters. Conflict was at a minimum, so it tends to leave the reader with a warm, safe feeling. Abercrombie’s, on the other hand, left us feeling the main character had grown and developed in the cut-throat politics of upper level management in Gettland. My view is: insulating girls from this kind of interaction in literature may continue to keep them from achieving upper level management success in real-life Fortune 500 companies.

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