Dear Book Lovers, Welcome! I am delighted that you have found The Through the Looking Glass blog. For over twenty years I have reviewed children's literature titles for my online journal, which came out six times a year. Every book I reviewed for that publication can be found on the Through the Looking Glass website (the link is below). I am now focusing on writing reviews and articles, and finding interesting book related news, for this blog. Many of the titles that I will be sharing with you will appeal to adults as well as children. I firmly believe that some of the best writing in the world can be found on the pages of books that were written for young people. I invite you adults to explore these books for yourselves; they will, I am sure, delight and surprise you. I hope what you will find here will make your journey into the world of children's literature more enjoyable. Please visit the Through the Looking Glass Facebook page as well for even more bookish posts

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

The new Listen-Along Storybook Program from Sterling, and a book giveway

Recently the folks at Sterling sent me an email to tell me about a new program that they are launching. It is called Listen-Along Storybook and I think it is a wonderful idea. Sterling has created delightful audio recordings of some of their books for children to enjoy, and the recordings are free! This is what Sterling has to say about their new program:

LISTEN-ALONG STORYBOOK, a website and iTunes podcast, lets consumers download audiobooks of select Sterling picture books. It will delight children and bring backlist titles back into the spotlight. LISTEN-ALONG STORYBOOK rolls out with eight of our most popular titles. Every book in the program willl have a sticker directing readers to the website, www.listenalongstorybook.com, where they can get the free downloads or listen to them as streaming audio.

You can sample one of the books, Cesar takes a break, by clicking here. You might also enjoy seeing how this title was turned into an audiobook. Here is a podcast about how the audiobook of Cesar takes a break was recorded. To view the podcast with a full screen double click on it. 

Here is my review of the print version of Cesar takes a break.

Cesar takes a break
Susan Collins Thoms
Illustrated by Roge
Picture Book
Ages 4 to 7
Sterling, 2008, 1402736533
   Cesar is an iguana who was adopted by Ms. Lee and who now lives in a second-grade classroom at Pinebrook Elementary School. Cesar has a very comfortable life, and he thinks the world of his children, who happily tend to his every need. He often wonders “how this class every managed” before he arrived on the scene. With his help class time runs smoothly for everyone, and Cesar is understandably very proud of his abilities.
   Then the most dreadful thing happens! Cesar learns that he is going to be all alone for an entire week. School will be closed for Spring Break and Cesar is going to have to make do with being fed by Mr. Will, the school custodian. For a day or two Cesar mopes around feeling lonely and sorry for himself. Then, being an iguana who does let life get him down, Cesar decides that he too will have a break. He will take advantage of the Spring Break situation to explore the school at his leisure.
   Children will love sharing Cesar’s adventures as he makes friends, eats wonderful meals, explores new places, and discovers that he has even more talents than he thought he did. With a delightful and often very funny story and charming artwork, this is a picture book that children will love to share with others. Iguana fans will find a section at the back of book full of interesting facts about green iguanas. 

Send me an email and I will enter you in a drawing to win all eight of the books that are in the Listen Along Storybook program. Three of you will be lucky winners! These are the books that are included in the giveaway.

Good luck!


Aaron Mead said...

Hmmm. I'm not a big fan of the whole "listen along" idea. Seems like this makes it easier for adults to opt out of reading to their children by letting technology do it for them. While the book gets read to the child, the child misses out on all the important relational benefits that come from snuggling on the couch and reading together. I realize that these products are not meant to replace the real thing, but I worry that in our drive to make things "easier" and "more efficient" via technology, replacement ends up being the result.

Terry Doherty said...

Thanks for the link. I love the idea of having a read-along version. It helps kids connect with the words in their own way, and it allows them to hear a story in different ways.

For parents who are uncomfortable reading aloud - or parents who can't read at all - this is a way to engage kids with books. No one says you can't sit and listen together!

Marya Jansen-Gruber said...

The great thing about products like this is that they often get children who do not like books and reading interested in stories and storytelling. Children who think books are "boring" will discover that there is a world of entertainment out there that they really did not appreciate before.

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