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Daniel Jones's Teenage Kicks column: Getting kids reading

By Llanelli Star  |  Posted: July 17, 2013

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GOOD news, not all young people are violent thugs anymore.

Because now, young people are more into books because of series like The Hunger Games, Twilight and Harry Potter.

This is brilliant for multiple reasons. Firstly, because books are brilliant and everybody should read them — there's so much choice and variety.

Also, if people are reading books when they're young and enjoying them, chances are that they'll carry on doing it.

I know this because I spent my childhood reverently reading the Harry Potter series.

This directly resulted in me wanting to read other books, which in turn is why I enjoy writing, which makes me want to be a journalist.

Getting young people reading is greatly important, as all creative endeavour originates with reading and writing.

This is why books are the purest forms of creativity and the most important.

Think about it, films start off as a written screenplay, and the same for TV series.

Video game stories are written before the game is made, musical lyrics are written and read before the song is recorded. Books, and the reading of books, is core, and essential to creativity.

And while we're on the subject of things young people should read, I would also suggest an idea for how to get more kids into both English and history. Use more historical fiction in schools.

For example, reading Conn Iggulden's excellent Emperor series about the life of Julius Caesar is what inspired me to take Ancient History at A Level.

You could use the Sharpe stories by Bernard Cornwell, or Hilary Mantel's novelisation of the rise and fall of Thomas Cromwell.

For those who say that books like these are too adult for young minds, consider that trying to get teenagers to do something by treating them as adults is a great method.

Basically, young people reading more is great news and everybody should be happy about it.

Even if the books they're reading are works like the Twilight series. You take what you get, right?

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