Provoost was one of a team of Belgian and Dutch authors who met their British contemporaries in Antwerp recently for a programme of talks organised by the city's National Centre for Children's Literature (a well-stocked resource for teachers in Flemish-speaking Belgium) and the British Council. The common ground they explored included the perennial issue of content in fiction for older readers: is there a place for a nihilistic children's book? The debate will continuewhen Roehampton Institute, south-west London, hosts a second day conference on May 13 (details on 020 8392 3346; firstname.lastname@example.org). Bart Moeyaert, another top Belgian writer for teenagers (published in the US but not here) and Wim Hofman, whose subversive retelling of Snow White is not available in English, will be among the guests alongside Anne Provoost. Janni Howker, David Almond, Philip Pullman and Michael Morpurgo make up the home team of authors.