The development of education, which in the 18th century was available not only to boys, but also girls from wealthy bourgeois families, as well as the development of publishing houses and specialised bookstores with books for children (the first of them was founded by John Newbery) caused the phenomenon of children and teenagers’ ‘eager reading’. The introduction of free access for children to library collections at the American public library in Pawtucket, Rhode Island (1877), turned out to be the ‘Copernican revolution’. The idea was introduced to many American and European libraries. From that time on, children and teenage readers had a real influence not only on the selection of their own readings, but also on the profile, subjects and nature of newly-created books. At the same time, the opposite phenomenon intensified: adult writers and educators tried to control the readings of younger generation. The catalogues of books for children and adolescents created during nearly half a century (1884–1929), evaluated the didactic values of readings, but ignored their literary qualities.