Children don’t read “genres”; they read stories. Below a certain age, they don’t distinguish between “true” and “not true,” because they see no reason that a white rabbit shouldn’t possess a pocket watch, that whales shouldn’t talk, or that sentient beings shouldn’t live on other planets and travel around in spaceships. Science-fiction tropes aren’t read as “science fiction”; they’re read as fiction. And fiction is read as reality. And sometimes reality lives under the bed and has very large teeth, and it’s no use pretending otherwise.
"The Spider Women" by Margaret Atwood, The New Yorker, June 4 & 11, 2012