Tales of a Seventh-Grade Scare Tactic

Ellen writes \"This Slate Story
talks about what can go wrong in the kids\' section of a bookstore or library. They say the new books resemble Victorian tracts: moral tales where every action had to be met with an equal and opposite reaction. This new genre\'s marketing name is \"realistic fiction.\" On these shelves, children never enjoy any kind of unsupervised life without dire results. No one can misbehave or even take normal risks (lie to Mom, go out alone) without being made to realize what an awful mistake it was.

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