When I went to Book Expo America 2009 back in May, I didn't fully realize the wide range of products I'd encounter there. It was amazing and I decided that, while all the major authors were already discussed, the publishers, authors and other products I learned about that have not received their fair share publicity in the blogosphere deserve a spotlight on my blog.
First one I want to tell you about is "KIKI" magazine. I don't usually talk about anything other than books on my blog (actually, it's more like never) but there were a few factors that made my decision to discuss this magazine pretty easy.
First of all, the people representing "KIKI" in the booth were one of the nicest and most friendly group I got to talk to at BEA. The enthusiasm for their product was obvious and quite contagious, I think they were a perfect example of what true passion can do to promoting a product. I really just wanted to stay there for the remainder of the day and chat.
Secondly, I am a mom of a girl who will soon be entering the world of teens. She is 10 right now and I think this age is one of the most important but also one of the most confusing to girls. They are trying to find themselves in the world and sadly the mass media, even the ones targeting this age specific audience, is doing more harm than good. I cannot tell you the countless times when I'd actually consider taking Karolina (my daughter) to the grocery store because of all the crazy magazines flooding the register area, many of them displaying all the dirty laundry and indecent pictures on the front pages. Even magazines for girls her age are filled with unreal images of teen celebrities, all rich, gorgeous, successful but all of them also discussing their intimate relationships with opposite sex starting at the very early age, wearing atrocious amounts of make-up, showing off hair done better than even I will ever dream of having and most importantly they all look like clones!
This is where "KIKI" steps in. It's a magazine for girls 8 and up and I read a whole issue and I can tell you than it's easily appropriate for even 12 year-olds. All the girls shown in this magazine are girls you see everyday on the street, at school and what girls should look like, no crazy make-up, very natural, and not crazy, skinny 'bamboo sticks' the celebrity world would want my daughter to believe is the norm. "KIKI" shows that it is not. As a matter of fact, its main mission is to give girls an alternative, a way out of the plague of body image, social status and material lifestyle issues. And I'm all for it.
Lastly, "KIKI" is really a cool, fun magazine (although I'm not sure if I'm even supposed to use 'cool' anymore).
Here are some samples of what "KIKI" is all about from their summer issue:
And this is 'World Beat' with articles on Henna and Bindi, since the summer issue of KIKI visits Hong Kong and talk all about Mumbai.
*It has a great variety of topics: art, design, history, personal hygiene, profiles of girls from around the world and of all ethnicities, even business and finances.
*It gives girls learning opportunities in "design-you-own" activity section, and it's not only clothes they're designing, they can plan vacation, learn to build their own businesses and even design sports equipment.
*The design of the whole magazine is very lively but very put together too. It's easy to navigate the pages and the combination of photography, fun graphics and interesting content makes it a pleasurable read.