PANTHER was originally going to be published on Constable & Robinson's YA Much-In-Little imprint. It will now be published on the Corsair imprint, which has traditionally published a broader range of fiction. I believe this is indicative of my book's crossover appeal.
I have a story that demonstrates my views on being too strict with age recommendations for books. When I was 11 years old I decided to read The Shining. I had seen, been terrified by, and loved the film. So I took it into school to read in my year 7 literacy class. As you're aware, The Shining is considered an adult book both in subject matter and style, but I was quite happy getting on with it. My literacy teacher wrote a note in my student planner kindly suggesting to my mother that it was too advanced for me. She wrote back kindly suggesting he sod off.
I believe that if someone is enjoying a book, be it a young person reading an adult book or an adult reading a children's book, let them get on with it. There is no better way to learn about the world and ourselves than by reading as widely as possible. And, as Patrick Ness frequently points out, children are keen self-censors. If they try reading something they don't understand or feel comfortable with, they'll likely stop.
I want as many people as possible, of all ages, to read PANTHER. Not only because I'm immensely proud of it, but because I believe people of all ages will enjoy it, maybe learn something from it, and maybe see the world a tiny bit differently afterward - an affect only a good book can have.