Public library lending figures show that children's borrowing has increased. But there are some unusual omissions.
What does seem a mystery of Hogwartian proportions is the lack of Harry Potter. JK Rowling fails to make it into the top twenty of the most borrowed children’s authors, only managing to appear in 96th place. Despite being the most borrowed titles overall in 2001/2, 2003/4 and 2007/8, she seems to have fallen off the radar since the saga came to an end.This seems staggering considering the phenomenal sales of the seven-book series. Yet it is probably because there are only seven Harry Potter books that JK Rowling’s place has slipped. That and the likelihood that many children may have preferred to own the books, rather than borrow them.
It is encouraging to know that libraries and books still occupy a powerful place in children's lives. Long may children continue to discover the delights of borrowing the BFG, Kipper the Dog – and even those pesky fairies.