Wednesday, May 25, 2011

The Book Report: Sharing the latest in books, apps and literary marketplace news

"Books" by Paula Slade

Welcome to another edition of “The Book Report.” This weekly column is dedicated solely to the best in books, apps, audio and video adaptations, technology updates as well as literary news and events. Like our sister columns, “If it’s Tuesday it must be toys and tours,” Thursday’s “Musical Notes” and Friday’s “Popcorn Report,” which respectively features the information on toys and travel, music, and movies, this weekly post highlights the important world of literature as positive entertainment for children and teens. Be sure to check back each Wednesday.


Barnes and Noble unveils the new Nook

The battle of the eReaders has just been upped with Barnes & Noble’s introduction of the latest version of the Nook that features “Easiest to use 6 touchscreen ; most advanced E-Ink display, crisp text, even in bright sun ; longest battery life- read up to 2 months on just 1 charge; ultra-light and thin -under 8 ounces; largest bookstore with more than 2 million titles (get them in seconds) and expert recommendations and fun social features.”

The new Nook costs $139 and is now on sale to order on the Barnes & Noble website, and best of all it will ship June 10th, 2011 – just in time for Father’s Day.

This comes on the heels of’s announcement last week that they are now selling more e-books than print books. Let the games begin.


The Eric Carle Museum of Picture Book Art

The Bric-a-Brac Theatre Company presents Daddy, What if…The Poetry and Songs of Shel Silverstein

Shel Silverstein’s best known and beloved poems and songs, which have already captivated at least two generations of children and their parents and are to be shared with the newest generation. The performance will invite and encourage active participations by the audience.”

FREE with museum admission
125 West Bay Road, Amherst, Massachusetts 01002
Saturday, May 28 and Sunday May 29, 2011

Phone: (413) 658-1100/ Fax (413) 658-1139


Disney’s Cars Lightning Was Here: My Puzzle Book

With the June 24, 2011 launch of the new Disney-Pixar Cars 2 feature, children will enjoy seeing the original cast of characters come to life in this story app that takes fans of the franchise on a tour of Radiator Springs.

The app provides a professional narration track, the option for parents to record their own voice reading the story, plus interactive puzzles and sound effects.

The video below provides a preview of Cars Lightning Was Here: My Puzzle Book.
This app is available for the iPhone, iPod Touch and the iPad for only $0.99 through the iTunes store.


Because I Said So!
By: Keller Williams

Popular musician, Keller Williams has crossed over into the world of children’s music with his sixteenth album, Kids, and on the heels of that CD comes his first children’s book based on the lyrics of one of the album’s catchy tunes, “Because I Said So!”
From Fun Read Publishing, Because I Said So!, is a humorously illustrated version of the song, translated with child-like vision by noted Virginia based artist, Bill Harris.

“Told through the eyes of 'Lil Keller', the moral of the story is that you can't always get what you want and there isn't always a good reason why. “ Everything from having a pet alligator to a real airplane are all part of a child’s inner world of imaginative “wants” and these are handled well in this fun 33-page read.

Both the book and a CD of the song are available direct from the artist’s website for $20. Recommended reading level ages 2-8.



Produced by: The award-winning Weston Woods Studios for Scholastic Storybook Treasures

Just released, THE NORTH STAR is a truly inspirational collection of entertaining children’s books that are suitable for all ages and have won such prestigious awards as: Caldecott Honor, Smithsonian Notable Book, Parents’ Choice Award, Storytelling World Award, and ALA Notable Video.

This compilation of stories, which visually come to life instills the all-important themes of cooperation; friendship; problem solving and believing in the journey that one takes in life in order to capture their dreams.

The 57-minute collection plus extras includes an interview with That Book Woman author Heather Henson and illustrator David Small plus a Read-along. 

Included in this offering are the following stories listed below. (Production notes provided by distributor New Video, where the DVD carries a Suggested Retail Price of $14.95 US or $16.95 CAN) but may be ordered with best pricing through for $10.99 or Amazon Marketplace for $8.52.)

To explore each of the titles further in depth, simply click on links below to the original books, which are also offered through

THE NORTH STAR (Written and illustrated by Peter H. Reynolds, narrated by Tim Curry) In this classic storybook about lifelong learning, children of all ages will be inspired to navigate their full potential and follow their dreams.

THAT BOOK WOMAN (By Heather Henson, illustrated by David Small, narrated by Walker Harrison) This is the moving story of the Pack Horse Librarians, whose bravery and commitment helped rural children find something wonderful in books.

PLAYERS IN PIGTAILS (By Shana Corey, illustrated by Rebecca Gibbon, narrated by Zooey Deschanel) One brave girl proves that she’s in a league of her own as she strives to become a player in the first-ever All-American Girls Professional Baseball league.

YO! YES? (Written and illustrated by Chris Raschka) Two lonely boys who don’t know each other meet on a city street with a simple greeting in this heart-warming tale of friendship and cooperation.

SWAMP ANGEL (By Anne Isaacs, illustrated by Paul O. Zelinsky, narrated by Alison Moorer) Angelica, or “Swamp Angel,” the greatest woodswoman in Tennessee, takes on a huge ravenous bear known as Thundering Tarnation. Can she tackle this beast?”

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