Let me tell you about this book. To tell you about this book, I have to tell you about another book. When I was a child, we had a book called “I can choose my bedtime story”. The contents page had a bunch of illustrations on it in lieu of titles. The idea was that a kid could pick a picture, turn to that page and their loving, patient parent could read them the tale. We must have heard these stories a million times as children. Some more often than others, because, of course, we had favourites.
When I had a child of my own, I managed to abscond from my parents’ house with this book that I had loved as a child, so that I could read it to my own child. Much as I had, he loved picking a story from the contents page. And that was when I made my terrible heart-breaking discovery.
The stories were awful.
Through adult (editorial, kiddielit expert) eyes they were badly written and plot holey. The illustrations were actually kind of average. I looked at this book I had adored as a kid, while I was reading it to my own child, and I thought, “I can do better”.
So, in true Jax style, I did.
I had to wait several years. When I had this idea, I didn’t have the Raven, the energy or the skills to do it justice. I needed to learn more. I kept it on the backburner and waited till I had them.
Then the Raven happened. I got better at what I do. The time seemed ripe. So we made it happen.
We have kept the “choose your own” illustrated contents page concept, but everything else is better. The illustrations are bold and bright and colourful and beautiful. (Thank you to Jon Stubbington, who totally delivered on what we were looking for.) The stories are diverse and substantial. Well-written. Engaging.
Even my kid is crazy excited about this book. IT is very close to my heart.
I very much hope it may be close to yours too. But for that to happen, for us to be able to print this beautiful thing, we need you to come on board and help us make it happen. If you have a small human in your life who might love a new book, consider making it this one. If you just want to see more quality books for kids in the world, just have a beer with us, and support us that way. (Yes, we have a beer reward again, because, well, this is the Raven, after all.) Or just drop us $7 and irritate the snot out of Will by making the total a weird number. 😉
I love you, awesome nerds. Help me do a cool thing. ❤