Wizard and vampire stories more popular than Dahl

Modern-day tales of wizards and vampires are proving more popular with today’s children than classic stories such as Roald Dahl’s Matilda, research has revealed.

A study has found books by traditional favourites like Dahl and Allan Ahlberg are no longer the first choice of youngsters in the UK.

Glass Houses, the first book in the Morganville Vampires series by Rachel Caine, is the most popular novel among children.

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It is followed by the third of JK Rowling’s Harry Potter series, Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban, and Twilight, the first of Stephenie Meyer’s vampire books.

More than 300,000 children aged five to 16 were asked to vote for their favourite books as part of the study by Renaissance Learning.

The findings suggest the popularity of books such as Dahl’s Matilda and BFG or Ahlberg’s The Jolly Postman, all published over 25 years ago, are on the wane. Neither author has a book in the top ten. Instead, the list is dominated by fantasy and adventure.