Seven Stories and FL produce children's diversity list

Seven Stories and FL produce children's diversity list

Seven Stories bookshop and publisher Frances Lincoln are to release a list of 50 children’s books, published from the 1950s to the present day, that best represent cultural diversity.

On 13th October, Seven Stories will release Diverse Voices, which is aimed at exploring cultural diversity, either in terms of its story or the ethnic and cultural origins of the author or illustrator.

The list will be chosen by a panel of experts, including Guardian children’s books editor Julia Eccleshare and Booktrust arts project manager Katherine Woodfine. As well as diversity, the panel will take into account literary merit and commercial success, as well as ensuring there is a spread of titles published from the 1950s to the present day.

The books will be organised into four categories (0–5 years, 6–8, 9–13 and 14+) and Seven Stories will create four book packs—one for each age group. The packs will be sent to subscribers of Seven Stories’ Hooks Into Books scheme, and will also be sold via its shop.

Kate Edwards, chief executive of Newcastle’s Seven Stories, hopes the list “will remind booksellers, teachers, librarians and readers that, though not numerous, there are many outstanding culturally diverse stories still in print”. She said the books on the list will have already introduced readers to different cultures and diverse characters, and helped “many other readers because they see people and children like themselves in the stories”.

The Diversity Voices list replaces the Frances Lincoln Diversity Prize, which ran from 2008 until 2013.