The former head of Britain's MI5 spy agency said she worries children are losing their love of novels and reading because of electronic communications.
Dame Stella Rimington, who currently chairs the panel handing out this year's Man Booker Prize for Fiction, warns children are spending too much time on mobile phones and social networking sites, The Daily Telegraph reported Wednesday.
She said while she is confident there will be a market for fiction in 100 years, she fears many children are not growing up to be book lovers.
"I think much of the Twittering and e-mailing and texting and all that sort of stuff that children go in for now may be taking their eyes off reading fiction," Dame Rimington said. "When I was young we read more than the average child reads now."
She said teachers need to find ways to instill a love of fiction in children, adding that electronic reading devices like the Amazon Kindle "could help turn the tide."