Gleitzman has been writing novels for over two decades, while Wallace’s debut novel was released last year, but both succeed in writing harrowing novels about children with big problems. They both hope that this kind of novel will allow young people to, in Gleitzman’s words, “stretch their moral muscles.” Wallace read a passage from ‘Out of Shadows’ which seemed light hearted but hinted at the darker, bleaker things to come; Gleitzman’s reading of ‘Too Small to Fail’ got a few laughs before unease grew to horror at the unthinkable situation being described. Both were powerful selections. Unfortunately, the discussion that followed seemed slightly too complex for the young audience and more should have been done to make time for their questions.
RBS Main Theatre, 23 Aug, 4.30pm (5.30pm), £4.50, eibfpp71.