Wild About Children’s Books
by J. Schmidt
The tagline on their website says it all: a podcast about the children’s books we love and why we love them. The podcast, called Just One More Book, is the brainchild of Canadian parents, Andrea Ross and Mark Blevis. (A podcast is an audio recording that can be downloaded to a portable media player, or played directly from a website.)
Three mornings a week, Ross and Blevis, parents of two young girls, pick one of their family’s favourite children’s books and record an informal book review. These warm and conversational reviews are recorded amidst the sounds of milk steaming and espresso brewing at their favourite coffee shop.
Just One More Book also features interviews with authors, illustrators and literacy experts and enthusiasts. Their guests have included celebrity authors such as Jack Prelutsky, Daniel Pinkwater, Eve Bunting, Eva Ibbotson, Henry Winkler and Mary Ann Hoberman and celebrity illustrators such as Mo Willems, Lane Smith, Paul O. Zelinsky, Marc Brown, Oliver Jeffers, Simon James and Kevin Hawkes. They also aim the spotlight at interesting and lesser known authors and illustrators. The couple also encourages listeners to send in their own reviews.
“Our goal is to link children with great books and to help create happy memories for children and the adults that read to them, and to have fun,” the couple state on their website.
Their approach has been a hit. “Our informal and personal discussions resonate with people” notes Ross. “Listeners around the world have written to tell us that feel they’re in the coffee shop with us,” adds Blevis.
Now in its third season, the podcast has gained international attention. It has been recommended by the American Library Association as one of its American Library Association (ALA) – Great web sites for kids and featured in Canadian Living Magazine, Parenting Magazine and such prestigious literary publications as School Library Journal, Books for Keeps, Publishers Weekly and Canadian Children’s Book News. “It’s exciting that families all over the world are enjoying our favourite books,” says Ross, “and we look forward to continuing to connect with families the world over in celebration of great children’s books”.
I’ll be adding this to my free book resources. You can get to them anytime by looking at my label cloud in my right sidebar and clicking on “books”.