Our colourful display of titles attracted a great deal of attention from local french readers who braved the freezing weather on ‘Mother’s Day’. Many were bemused as to why a British company was on show in deepest rural France. They had not realised their little town was a hotbed of activity for book production on an international scale!
In France book pricing is strictly regulated. Hardback and paperback editions are very expensive and the laws on discounting books put digital versions on sale at more or less the same price as print. There is much scepticism about e-readers and digital books in general. BUT – we still have book shops in France.
There was a lively public ‘debat’ (discussion) in the afternoon – after a most convivial three-course picnic lunch kindly provided by the Mayor! The consensus was that most local folk could not see themselves reading to their grandchildren from a screen. I showed them ‘Alf the Workshop Dog’ on my Kindle Fire – with illustrations and links to video clips and downloadable colouring pictures. All very nice, but they don’t believe it will catch on.
I worry that French culture will lose out in the long run if it is not accessible to the world. Watch out France – your younger generation is already downloading. Older folk may not buy-in to e-readers, but the youth of today are using their smart phones, tablets and online devices to satisfy their entertainment needs. Reading a story is just one small element alongside films, video clips, on-demand TV, gaming and social media that vie for our time. If you’ve got a link to the internet you can read stories from all over the world, regardless of national boundaries. If there is not enough material at reasonable prices in French, there’s nothing to stop readers trying out the millions of books available in English, German etc.
It would be shame if their efforts to protect existing publishing structures resulted in limited world access to their wonderful philosophy, poetry and written arts, from which we can all learn so much.
Meet the plucky and brave Alf – a stray mongrel dog with a magical story of friendship and bravery going back in time, in the first book Alf The Workshop Dog.
Who wouldn’t want to discover their very own Ferret Godfather in the woodshed? Find out about Isabella’s strange adventure with her new secret friend.
Finally, a modern story of young lad facing family changes and learning how to stand up for himself in a difficult new environment in Kool Kid Kruncha and The High Trapeze.
The print and eBook versions are full of illustrations by talented artist Miko Abellera, from the Philippines. His anime style captures the key moments from the stories, his unique interpretations get close up and often inside the action and adventure.
The author has also created free bonus materials to enhance the reading experience. Throughout the book are live links (and scannable QR codes in the printed version) to audio, video and downloadable pictures for colouring or printing, creating a fully interactive reading experience.
Oscar Sparrow, the talented narrator of the audio books, brings the characters to life and even sings the Zanubian National Anthem in Alf The Workshop Dog as well as taking Frankie Ferret for a daring cycle ride in a video embedded in Isabella’s Pink Bicycle.
All three titles are available in all formats at pocket money prices on Amazon worldwide and currently the Kindle eBook version is FREE to users of Kindle Unlimited!
The good news is you don’t need a Kindle to download a copy – Amazon now offer free E-reader Apps for just about every device – Pc, Mac, iPod, Android device, smart phones etc.
The website for the Once Upon a NOW Club is currently running giveaways to win paperback and audio book editions of all three stories. A little bird tells us there may be some extra special price promotions over Christmas where you can get the complete set on Kindle at a massive 92% discount…. take a visit on 24th 25th 26th December for this special seasonal treat!
Emma Calin, Romance novel and gritty short story writer has now turned her hand to children’s fiction.
The first in Emma’s series of modern-day fairy stories ‘ALF THE WORKSHOP DOG’ has its debut on Amazon this week in print, Kindle e-book and audio book formats.
This chapter-book story tells of a real-life dog who works in an inner-city garage with a bit of magic and adventure thrown in. Anime and manga artist Miko Abellera has created beautiful illustrations to bring the story to life.
The story is sprinkled with modern magic – QR codes link to bonus features such as video clips, music, photos and downloadable colouring pictures.
This book is for young readers (reading age seven and up) or adults to share with younger children.
Find out about competitions to win paperback, Kindle and audio book editions on Facebook:
plus for up to date news….
The brainchild of the poet Oscar Sparrow, he invited 5 other poets from around the world to write a collection of poems that would ‘freeze the frame’ on our bustling lives. In addition to their written words, each poet recorded a performance of each poem. To complete the project, a talented young pianist composed a theme for the anthology with individual motifs for each poet.
It’s a fantastic opportunity to hear works read aloud by these poets, in their own inimitable styles that really bring the poetry to life.
If you would like to get this audio book for FREE here are two suggestions ( you could do both of course!):
1. Sign up for a FREE 30 day trial membership on Audible and get FREEZE FRAME for FREE too. CLICK HERE FOR DETAILS
2. Get a FREE copy to download from Amazon. We have a number of ‘review copies’ to give away – we are doing this via a draw, to make it fair. The first draw will take place at the end of September. Click here to enter: a Rafflecopter giveaway
Congratulations to Oscar Sparrow, Paul Tobin, Jo VonBargen, Claude Nougat, Candy Bright and Jefferson Hansen on a great audio project.
Find the audio, print and kindle versions here too:
As the cycling season continues with the Vuelta a España and the Tour of Britain, here’s something to keep you going during the resting periods…
Gallo Romano recently recorded an audio edition of Les Woodland’s historical non-fiction book “Tour de France: The Inside Story”. The kind folks at Audible have given us some FREE copies to share with our friends.
We are having a draw for 2 free copies – one for Audible.com the other for Audible.co.uk. So if you enjoy non-fiction audiobooks or fancy trying one, or if you love cycling or the Tour de France: enter below…
The draw will take place on the 3rd of October. To get more chances of winning visit Bill McGann’s Bike Race Info website and leave a comment on the interview he did with Emma Calin about how the audiobook was created. He also provides a whole load of up to date daily stats about each stage of all major cycle races.
Oscar Sparrow has recently recorded an audiobook for the great British journalist of cycling – Les Woodland. It’s called Tour de France: The Inside Story and is a 9-hour feast for anyone who loves cycle racing, bikes, France and wants to know the history and background to the world’s greatest cycle race – and some would argue the world’s toughest athletic competition.
He’s also produced this video to explain to Les’s fans just how he went about researching and preparing for the narration of this audiobook.
There is currently an offer to get the book free if you sign up for a 30-day trial membership on Audible, saving $19.95 (£12.50)!
You can also win a copy of the brand new audiobook here: a Rafflecopter giveaway