Darby Creek High/Low Fiction Imprint Meets Teens Where They Are

By Kate Schefer, Digital Products Coordinator

When I first started as the Digital intern for Lerner two years ago, we were in the middle of production for our Fall 2017 enhanced ebooks, including Interactive Books and Audisee ebooks with audio. That was also when we launched our Audisee K-6 collection of ebooks with audio with 630 titles. Suffice to say, I spent most of my time completing quality assurance testing on all of our new products. I listened and read along to hundreds of books, ranging from pre-K picture books to middle grade curricular nonfiction, to our unique high-low fiction novels from the Darby Creek imprint. My first introduction to this new-to-me format was the series The Contest, which remains one of my favorite Lerner series.

What High/Low Fiction Means to Us

As a premier children’s publisher in the school/library market, we understand that not all of our readers are voracious. But there is a way to reach every type of reader. High/Low content features high-interest topics that appeal to mature readers, while approaching the text from a lower reading level, making our books accessible to more students. In recent years, Darby Creek has focused especially on genre fiction, delivering gripping mysteries, engaging sci-fi, and nail-biting horror. We also like to keep things relatable with series about daily teen struggles within the framework of football teams, or working on a ranch.

What High/Low Fiction Means to Readers

As you’ll certainly know, reading doesn’t come easy to plenty of students. But it’s the main way we gather and remember information in our daily lives, and it’s important to foster critical reading skills in everyone. For the teenager who balks at bookshelves, turns down large tomes, or sneaks to the bathroom during silent reading time, many of our Darby Creek books are available in digital formats. A lot of students are more familiar with reading on screens and devices, and letting them stay in their comfort zone while still getting them to read books is a big win. They can have the entire collection at their fingertips wherever they are, which is great for teens who have long bus rides, travel during school vacations, or are worried about being caught with a book (how lame!).

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What High/Low Fiction Can Mean to You

These books aren’t just for struggling readers. Since I first started, I’ve read dozens of our Darby Creek books and thoroughly enjoyed them all. They’re the perfect blend of realistic characters, relatable conflicts, and high-stake scenarios to keep readers engaged from start to finish. Because we publish entire series at a time, binging them is a habit we can get behind. And purchases over $500 come with complimentary QR codes (upon request at the time of the order) for students to scan and instantly access titles wherever they are. Check out all our Darby Creek books here to start building your wishlist, and sign up for a FREE 30-Day trial of Lerner Digital products to see how they help build reading skills and appreciation with all types of readers.

More posts by Kate.

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