“Of all the unexpected things in contemporary literature, this is among the oddest: that kids have an inordinate appetite for very long, very tricky, very strange books about places that don’t exist.”
Adam Gopnik’s New Yorker article on fantasy touches on children’s fascination with other worlds. Below a book on how children, ages 8-14, construct their own alternate realities and imaginary geographies. The authors point out that these worlds are not compensatory, that is, they are not built by introverts or children who lack social skills.
David Cohen / Stephen A. MacKeith,: The Development of Imagination: The Private Worlds of Childhood