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They want to put an age band on children's books! Right there, on the cover! No! We can't let this happen! Let's have some consumer Mumsnet power please

150 replies

ahundredtimes · 07/06/2008 15:33

I think it's such a BAD idea.

In fact I think it's such a BAD idea I can't believe it ever got out of the board room.

Do you?

If you do then you can write here and tell them so.

[sits down, holds placard, adjusts wooly hat]

OP posts:
Guadalupe · 07/06/2008 16:13

very stupid idea I agree, ds1 also reads books that would be marked for younger under that scheme, it would probably mean he wouldn't pick them up.

Might stop me too if I saw 9-11 every time I fancied re-reading Moondial.

RustyBear · 07/06/2008 16:37

Just been checking up on my old books - a lot of my childhood ones were disposed of when my parents moved,and I have had to rebuy some of my favourites for my DCs - only one of my Puffins is old enough to have the age range on the cover, later ones have moved it to the blurb inside - perhaps someone started a campaign back then!

Ineresting to see if you agree with these - mainly they seem to be minimum age limits:

Carbonel (Barbara Sleigh): For children of 8-11

Moonfleet(J Meade Faulkner): For all readers from 9 upwards, especially boys

Magic by the Lake (Edward Eager): For readers of nine and over
The White Riders (Monica Edwards):For ages 10-14

The Weirdstone of Brisingamen (Alan Garner):For boys and girls over 8

Friday's tunnel (John Verney):everyone from 11 years upwards

A Little Princess (Frances Hodgson Burnett): Mainly for girls of 8-12

The Chesterfield Gold (Roger Pilkington): For readers of nine and over

I also remember the comment on C.Day Lewis's The Otterbury Incident, because it annoyed me so much "Every boy will vote this detective story super!"

wheresthehamster · 07/06/2008 16:44

I think it would be helpful to have maybe have some sort of colour banding not necessarily for age but for content.

E.g. a yellow dot could indicate universal suitability, a red dot = some swearing, a black dot = some sexual content, brown dot = may be unsuitable for under 10s. That sort of thing.

Kindersurprise · 07/06/2008 16:47

Crazy idea, have emailed. Thanks for bringing this to ur attention.

ChippyMinton · 07/06/2008 16:53

V bad idea - i saw a mock-up book on the news yesterday and the age range was emblazoned in inch-high letter. However as an adult looking for suitable books for my DC and for presents, I would find some ability/content advice useful, maybe inside the book in small print?

OverMyDeadBody · 07/06/2008 17:01

what a ridiculous idea! What purpose does it serve?

I will be emailing my disaproval.

UnquietDad · 07/06/2008 17:03

green dot = bangs environmentalist drum
pink dot = gay coming-of-age teenage book
maroon dot = desert island fantasy

edam · 07/06/2008 17:04

Don't think the age ranges on my extensive childhood collection of Puffins put me off. It'd be handy when I'm shopping for presents for my friends' children.

Rachmumoftwo · 07/06/2008 17:11

I have emailed, and I hope you don't mind, posted about it on another forum too. The more parents that object the better.

Twiglett · 07/06/2008 17:14

what would they do with Harry Potter books?

"Contains weak plotlines and predictable ending. Suitable from age 4. Why are you reading it on your way to work, did the 'adult cover' fool you. Gah!"

Blandmum · 07/06/2008 17:15

Wasn't there a scheme with different colour dragons on the spines of books? I'm sure this was running in the 1960

Never worried me (paid up member of the puffin club btw!)

QueenMeabhOfConnaught · 07/06/2008 17:16

ahundredtimes, I'm still waiting for the "group singing and affirmative dancing".

MargaretMountford · 07/06/2008 17:19

oh puffin club !

Threadwormm · 07/06/2008 17:20

I was in the Puffin Club and the Tufty Club.

MargaretMountford · 07/06/2008 17:21

tufty ! (sobs with nostalgia)

Threadwormm · 07/06/2008 17:22

We had roll-up zebra crossings and mini-Belisha Beacons.

Blandmum · 07/06/2008 17:23

Will someone people confirm that I'm noy imagining the different coloured dragons thingie????

MargaretMountford · 07/06/2008 17:25

oh poor Willy Weasel

Kindersurprise · 07/06/2008 17:25

I can understand the reasoning behind it, making it easier for adults to chose a book for a child.

Still, I would prefer a friend/relative to ask me what kind of books the DCs like rather than relying on age ranges or (what my MIL does) how colourful the illustrations are. We have often had rather dodgy books from MIL, I always proofread them before reading them to theh DCs.

Threadwormm · 07/06/2008 17:26

I don't recollect these. It was the sixties -- sure you weren't tripping out?

stleger · 07/06/2008 17:27

I think they were Hodder and Stoughton children's range. Puffins also has young Puffin and Peacock ranges.

RustyBear · 07/06/2008 17:33

I remember the dragons - MB!
In fact if I can be arsed to get my laptop off my lap & trek upstairs to the back bedroom, I may find some....


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RustyBear · 07/06/2008 17:33

I may be some time.....

jamila169 · 07/06/2008 17:40

i remember the dragons! wern't they red,blue or green? I think the st clare's books had them on

ahundredtimes · 07/06/2008 17:40

But I can see why writers are objecting too though. Because they probably don't sit down and write and it and think 'Yes, this is for a 12 y-o' - they probably want anyone who is interested to read it.

It might help you to buy the book, but what really matters about books is the people who are reading them.

I think it's annoying and wrong. Who cares whether they think it's suitable for a 6 y-o if a 9 y-o wants to read it?

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