As a child Pavithra Srinivasan could not figure out why the rest of the kids in her class seemed to droop and doze during history classes while the teacher managed to hold her attention. Fast forward a few decades and she decides she wants to retell history to kids in a more interesting way and writes a book of ‘historical fiction’ for kids.
On Friday evening Helios Books in association with Landmark launched Back to the BCs , the first of a historical fiction series for children called Little Known Tales of Well Known Times .
he second half of the event consisted of a panel discussion on “The relevance and importance of historical fiction for children.” The panel comprised chief guest Madhan, (renowned cartoonist ), Chithra Madhavan (author of South Indian Heritage ), author Pavithra Srinivasan and publisher of Helios Books, Gitanjali J.B. (winner of British Council’s ‘Entrepreneur of the Year’).
“With this series we seek to amend many exclusions that have been made in Indian History — little known facts and anecdotes that make it as rich as it is,” noted Gitanjali. Chithra was all praises and said, “These are the kind of books that encourage kids to take up an interest in a subject like history that may seem dry and dull with all the dates, names, places and kingdoms. When we are stuck for solutions we always like to look at historical figures for inspiration, there are many forgotten nuggets of information that can be retold in forms such as this.”
Madhan pointed out how the language and style of the book would appeal to kids. “There are numerous essays about Ashoka, the Mahabharata, the Ramayana, etc. but they are too serious. Here is an author with the ability to translate history into something interesting.”