Jenni Doherty at Little Acorns joins campaign to champion Irish kids’ books

Watch more of our videos on Shots! 
and live on Freeview channel 276
Visit Shots! now
Jenny Doherty, a children’s bookseller from Derry, has joined a range of internationally celebrated Irish authors and illustrators to launch Discover Irish Children’s Books, a new initiative to champion children’s books written by those living and working in Ireland.

Jenni, of Little Acorns Bookstore, in Great James Street has teamed up with Eoin Colfer, Marita Conlon-McKenna, Chris Haughton, Shane Hegarty and Laureate na nÓg Patricia Forde, to highlight the range of Irish titles available to young readers.

The campaign will launch a new top ten bestsellers list dedicated to Irish children’s books.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

The list will be informed by the top ten bestsellers in a different independent bookshop across Ireland, including Little Acorns Bookstore, each week throughout September and October. The list will be available each week on

Jenni Doherty in Little Acorns BookstoreJenni Doherty in Little Acorns Bookstore
Jenni Doherty in Little Acorns Bookstore

Award-winning children’s writer and illustrator Chris Haughton has also designed a sticker to be made available to bookshops, libraries and schools to highlight Irish children’s books for young readers and adults.

Children’s writer and bookseller, Sarah Webb said: “Out of interest, I asked children attending my summer workshops who their favourite writer was. Even when prompted, they struggled to name an Irish writer.

“On the international stage, Ireland’s storytellers for children are much celebrated. Eoin Colfer’s ‘Artemis Fowl’ was a New York Times bestseller. John Boyne’s ‘The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas’ has been translated into 56 languages.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

"Oliver Jeffers has sold over 14 million books worldwide. Catherine Doyle, Judi Curtin, Roddy Doyle, Derek Landy, Mary Murphy – these are well-known names in children’s books globally.

“Yet at home there’s a lack of knowledge and awareness that Discover Irish Children’s Books is determined to tackle. We want to see new and well-established Irish writers and illustrators at book festivals, hear them on the radio and published in newspapers, and find them front and centre in bookshop and library displays.

“Almost a quarter of all books sold in Ireland are children’s titles, but celebrity authors and big marketing budgets dominate that pool. There will always be a place for international writers and for the classics we all know and love, but there is a diverse wealth of new Irish books available, we need to give them an equal opportunity to find their way into children’s hands.”

Read More
New chapter for Little Acorns Bookstore in Derry as shop reopens in new location

Children’s author and Laureate na nÓg, Patricia Ford said: “Ireland now has a wonderful canon of literature for children in both English and Irish. We owe it to our young people to promote that work and to make sure that they are aware of books that are written and illustrated here.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

"We all need to see ourselves and our culture in the books that we read, and our writers and illustrators, in Derry and across Ireland, need our support to continue making that work.”

Children’s Books Ireland CEO, Elaina Ryan said: “There’s much deserved celebration of the four Irish authors longlisted for the Booker Prize at the moment but what went by with little fanfare earlier this year, was the longlisting and shortlisting of two Irish authors and illustrators and an Irish publisher for the prestigious Yoto Carnegie Medals which recognises work created for children and young people.

"Ireland’s literary excellence is as obvious in our books for young readers as it is in those for adults, and they are equally worthy of our praise and support.”

Related topics: