Book About Garbage Was Placed on Government Procurement List for Libraries 2019
Book About Garbage by Halyna Tkachuk and eight school students from Kyiv was placed on government procurement list of 557 books for libraries of Ukraine in 2019. The book was published by The Old Lion Publishing House with the help of the charity project LuckyBooks.
The final list [of books], of course, is far from ideal. It shows that there is room for improvement. In particular, there is obvious lack of experts in the field of children's and young adult (YA) literature. Not all the books on the list are good enough, while some really good books didn’t get one or two votes to be enlisted. It is also saddening that children's and YA books add up to less than half of the total number of books. Readers of 5, 10 and 15 years old have very different reading needs, and as a result, not all of them will be able to find a book they might like. However, I would like to thank the Ukrainian Book Institute team for replenishing library funds, taking into account the wishes of experts and promising to improve the list forming process. Because of collaboration of the Ukrainian Book Institute and the experts, Ukrainian libraries can get a lot of interesting books, mostly educational literature for booklovers of any age. Among the books, there are biographies of famous people published by the IPIO publishing house; a series of books on mathematics, physics, and architecture published by MoYa Knyzhkova Polytsia, Frying Pan from A to Z, Botanicum and Historium published by the The Old Lion Publishing House, and, of course, a wonderful and much-needed "Garbage Book" written by Halyna Tkachuk together with the kids together published with help of the LuckyBooks.
In total, there will be almost 678 thousand books worth 87 million hryvnias to replenish public library funds in Ukraine. 43% of the books are written by contemporary Ukrainian authors. The first five books in the list are written by Ukrainian authors, and three of them are children’s book. TV presenter Oleksii Ananov spent “a week behind the computer with short breaks for the main work” and looked through the initial list of 2779 books. He said:
My subjective selection criteria are to choose books that somehow change us. They either teach people something, educate them, make a community and society somehow better, more dynamic, or they stimulate people to visit a library despite the widespread use of the Internet. First of all, I chose children's literature, educational books, encyclopedias, and books on economics and psychology. Another big part of the books is contemporary Ukrainian fiction and some of the foreign modern and classic novels in Ukrainian translations. So, we have enough of fiction literature by Ukrainian authors, for both kids and adults. The next step is to sort books by quality. The children's and YA literature is brilliant! But the educational literature is mostly translated from other languages. The publishers prioritize “world bestsellers” over local editions. Sometimes, I see real gems among books on art history or psychology. These are the books we would like readers to know about. The final thoughts are mostly about marketing: just like bookstores, libraries tried their best “to sell” their books to a reader, and that means that they put the well-known names, famous writers and bestseller novels on the foreground.
The Expert Board of the Ukrainian Book Institute consists of scholars, literary critics, culture project coordinators, heads of libraries, educators and journalists - in total, 50 experts. Some members of the Expert Board are participating in the forming the list of books for the second time. A journalist at ICTV and the host of Svoboda Slova (Freedom of Speech) Vadym Karpiak comments the difference between the 2018 and 2019 lists:
This year, everything passed very quietly, with no significant changes. Except that we had a little bit more time to make the choice than the previous time. In 2018, the libraries complained that there were not enough children's literature, so we did our best to include it to the list this time. I also noticed that this time, there was more non-fiction literature among the books we were offered to choose from. High-quality, interesting non-fiction that I would love to read. And that's cool. In general, the number of new books makes me happy. Five years ago, I knew almost all the books published in the Ukrainian market. And now, I find new interesting books that I haven’t seen before. I am happy about it. As for me, I think it is important to put aside your snobbery as an expert reader while choosing the books. I try my best to ignore my own taste and look at the books as an expert and take into account the audience request. Therefore, I add to the list the books that might not read myself but that might be in demand. The Expert Board doesn’t have to educate readers or nurture their tastes, it must satisfy readers’ desires and needs.
To improve the system, Vadym Karpiak offers to purchase books more often. Now, book selection and delivery happen once a year. But the expert believes that this process could be done at least twice a year, ideally every quarter. It would also impact the popularity of libraries among readers and would help increase the number of clients in libraries. For a reader, it is more interesting to see newly published books every season than to wait for them for a year.
Book About Garbage is the sixth published book by the LuckyBooks project. It was written after the project gave a series of workshops on ecology. The authors of the book became the children that took part in those workshops. They are Oleksandra Homa, Andrii Dobrovolskyi, Serhii Koliadych, Hanna Berezovska, Hanna Tereshchuk, Mykyta Subotovskyi, Anastasiia Sakhno, and Karina Parkhomenko. The illustrations were created by Anton Selleshii. The book was released at Book Arsenal-2019 in Kyiv, and later, in five other cities in Ukraine. Last month, LuckyBooks gave the book as a present to 155 libraries in seven Eastern and Southern regions of the country.
Last year, three books on the LuckyBooks project were enlisted to the public procurement list for libraries: Kuzko Kuziakin “#WHATISMATH?”, Luca Novelli “Tesla and the car on Cosmic Energy,” and Andrii Tuzhykov “The Brief History of Technology.”