Books for children in summer

Domestic children's books increasingly hold an important position and account for a high proportion of the publishing market. Publishing houses have published a lot of 2024 summer books.

Parents prefer that their children spend time reading than spending their time using smartphones, playing games

A representative of Thu Duc City Book Street in Ho Chi Minh City said that after more than 4 months of operation, the book street has earned a revenue of VND 4.5 billion and more than 61,262 books have been sold. Of 61,262 books, children's book revenue reached nearly VND900 million accounting for 20 percent of total revenue.

Previously, in 2023, revenue at Ho Chi Minh City Book Street reached VND 59.3 billion with about 758,000 books sold including over 166,000 children's books generating revenue of VND7.88 billion (accounting for 13.3 percent).

According to Director Le Hoang of Ho Chi Minh City Book Street, the above numbers reflect that parents are more interested in buying books for their children to read, learn and entertain because many parents prefer that their children spend time reading than spending their time using smartphones, playing games, and surfing social networks. Never before have domestic children's books been published in such quantity and quality as they are today, said Mr. Le Hoang. This is proven through the books that have won the National Book Award for children in recent times.

Not only are there paper books, but the children's book market has also become more diverse with the appearance of audiobooks. This not only meets the current digital transformation trend but also meets the needs of both parents and children. Mr. Le Hoang Thach, Director of Voiz FM Audiobook Application, said that currently Voiz FM has about 200 books for children, and more and more audiobooks will be done in the coming time.

However, he admitted that in comparison to other book lines, the number of audiobooks is small because children cannot use apps on their phones themselves but still depend on their parents. However, this is still an indispensable product, because Voiz FM's key customers are aged 25-35 people who have newborn babies; therefore, they can have another option for educating their children at night before going to bed or when the whole family is traveling long distances, said Mr. Le Hoang Thach.

This summer, many children's book awards have been held. On the one hand, the awards have created a vibrant creative atmosphere for domestic authors, but at the same time, they have also brought a rich source of manuscripts, especially guaranteed by awards; hence, more good books will be published for children.

After the first three works were released, the Kim Dong Publishing House has continued to introduce a series of works of both prose and poetry from the Kim Dong Literary Award 2023-2025, including Dai nao nha ong ngoai (Grandfather's house riot), Hai Au di tim cha (Hai Au looks for his father), Net Na va Cu Nhay, Cuoc phieu luu cua Cong Gio Van Xanh (The Adventures of blue fiddler crabs, Chu de dem trang (Cricket on the Moonlit Night).

Last year, the De Men Cricket Children's Awards awarded 4 Cricket Aspiration Awards with two manuscripts including In a Place Where There Are Many Dragons (Moc An) and The King of the Lake (Uong Trieu). Currently, the long story In a Place with Many Dragons has been released by Kim Dong Publishing House, and King of the Lake Village is being prepared for publication. Particularly, one of the two prizes is a series of manuscripts Me, My Father and From the Letters by 12-year-old author Doan Lu Thuy Phuong which was also printed into a book early this year.

The 2024 Cricket Children's Award has also just been announced. Among the works that won the Cricket's Desire Award were two manuscripts comprising the long story Duoi chan troi xanh ngat (Under the Blue Sky) by author Lu Mai and the picture book Thu vien ky bi (The Mysterious Library) by author Le Sinh Hung, 14 years old. Along with that is a reward for the manuscript of the long story Con khi vang bap o Ru Mo (The Golden Monkey in Ru Mo) of Dang Chuong Ngan.

Mr. Le Hoang said that, currently, the quality of domestic children's books is not a concern because publishing units themselves are always taking heed of new and unique topics and content to make their brand name more popular amongst parents and small readers. However, what worries Mr. Le Hoang is that the number of children's readers who buy books is not many. Thus he stressed that communication by the media should be more increased to attract parents’ attention and children.

Many people often compare domestic and foreign children's books, however, this is not fair, said Ms. Vo Thien Huong representing the Kim Dong Publishing House. According to her, foreign books published in Vietnam are often good books, carefully selected around the world while domestic children's books also have a huge advantage for young readers. Domestic children's books have the closeness of culture, place names, and even character names. In fact, Vietnamese children's books are getting better and better; that’s why many works have been copyrighted by publishers around the world.

Other news