Eight-Year-Old Lampoons the Bush Administration

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Eight-year-old internationally published author Adora Svitak tackles hot button issues in her upcoming novel, "Yang in Disguise."

Eight-year-old author Adora Svitak tackles hot button issues in her upcoming novel, "Yang in Disguise". Although the novel is set in a fantasy world, the young author says that her antagonist, a greedy and amoral king, is ‘a more toned down version of George W. Bush’. When his son leaves his father’s kingdom to see if he can find a more peaceful solution to his country’s problems, the eight-year-old author uses each land he visits as an opportunity to comment on a number of political and cultural issues, including gay rights, immigration policies, Middle Eastern women’s rights, the environment, vengeance, and nationalism. Svitak, who cites Voltaire’s Candide as an influence, says she wanted to ‘use comedy to keep people thinking’. Svitak’s touch is certainly more comedic than didactic, instead of being obsessed with crude oil, one land her main character visits is engaged in a war over cooking oil.

Svitak published her first book, "Flying Fingers: Master the Tools of Learning Through the Joy of Writing" at age 7. The second American edition is in the works, and the book has also been published in China, where Svitak is a media sensation. A Korean edition is pending. In addition to "Yang in Disguise", the author has just finished work on a book of poems, "Dancing Fingers", which is designed for younger readers and is more whimsical than political in tone.

‘I like to keep exploring different genres. My first book was more strictly a collection of fantasy and historical fiction with writing tips,’ Adora says. ‘I watch the news a lot, and it gets me thinking. My goal with "Yang in Disguise" was to create a story that would explain some of my ideas about war and peace, but still be funny to other kids.’

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Joyce Svitak
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