Top 10 facts about children’s books

TODAY is International Children’s Books Day, celebrated each year on April 2, which was the date on which Hans Christian Andersen was born in 1705.

Published: Tue, April 2, 2013

Hans Christian Anderson was uncomplementary about his appearance

1. Hans Andersen was tall and thin with a big nose and described himself as ugly.
2. Around £2.2billion is spent on books each year in the UK, of which a fifth goes on children’s books.
3. The bestselling children’s book of all time may well be JRR Tolkien’s The Hobbit, which has sold more than 100 million copies since 1937.
4. The seven Harry Potter books are estimated to have sold 450 million between them but precise figures for the individual titles are unknown.
5. Hans Christian Andersen was born two months after his parents married.  

6. The Oxford English Dictionary lists 21 words as having been introduced into the language by Lewis Carroll, author of Alice In Wonderland.
7. Alice In Wonderland was banned in China in 1931 as talking animals were an insult to humans.
8. Hans Andersen never ate pork and when staying in hotels always carried a coil of rope with him in case he needed to escape from a fire.
9. The real name of “Dr Seuss”, author of 64 children’s books, was Theodor Seuss Geisel.
10. When asked why he had no children of his own, De Seuss said: “You have ’em; I’ll entertain ’em.”


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