The books on the best selling Children’s charts this week show an obvious preference for animals and famous brands. Outside of these trends are non fiction texts, books which deal with specific problems through story telling, or are classics of literature.
Disney rules over the branded books, between the books featuring Marvel heroes, Princesses, and other characters from the companies vast media empire, they control over half the books on the chart. This more than anything else helps to underline just how much of the entertainment industry is owned by Mickey and Friends. Also represented are various toy brands, such as Hot Wheels, and Barbie. And there are numerous books about characters from cartoons from various channels and companies. To put it bluntly, brands are most of the chart. However, within that category, many of the books also align with some of the trends found in the books not belonging to brands.
The most obvious trend in children’s eBooks is that of stories featuring animals. From stories about piratical cats, to homework eating foxes, animals are the protagonists and the villains and everything in between for these books. Often they are used to engender immediate emotional bonds with the children that read these books, and then go on to have humanised lives within the stories. There is no obvious reason why humans could not be used in many of these books, often the stories would actually make more sense for the characters to be human, however by using cats, squirrels and other creatures the reader does not need to apply the normal rules of human society to these characters. Essentially, by making a character an animal rather than a human, no one can complain about the story not being realistic enough.
Also popular this week, as it is most weeks, are those books which tell a story with the intention of teaching the reader something. The reader might be expected to learn about hospital visits, or about how kindness is important, or one of many other similar lessons. Generally speaking the books are picture books with brightly coloured pictures, they rarely stick to close to realist styles, and are often cast with animals or cartoon characters, like Spongebob Squarepants.
This week Martin M. Goldwyn’s book, Why Do Cats Like Catnip?: 324 Questions and Answers to Astound and Amaze, is on the chart, representing non-fiction practically by itself. It is interesting that while representing one of the less popular trends of the week, non-fiction, it is nonetheless helping to back up one of the most popular, that animals on the cover and in the story are an author’s best friend.
Finally, the last category that is trending this week is books that are Classics, or close enough to ones that it would be hard to imagine them missing from the chart. Harry Potter, by J. K. Rowling, is of course here, as is The Hobbit, by J. R. R. Tolkien, and The Hunger Games series, by Suzanne Collins. These books are unlikely to disappear anytime soon, the help from movies and television shows, and rumours of both, help bounce them up out of obscurity before they get forgotten about.
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