Amy Hest’s spare evocative text is a true celebration of new readers and good friends everywhere, while Lauren Castillo’s pen-and-ink and watercolor illustrations, with their bold saturated colors against winter white, perfectly capture the wonder and delight of this magical day.
Amy Hest‘s many acclaimed children’s books include the New York Times bestseller Kiss Good Night. A three-time winner of the prestigious Christopher Award, she lives in New York City. She claims to have absolutely no hidden talents, unless you count an uncanny interest in coffee ice cream and certain dogs in the Wheaten Terrier or Airedale family. Amy likes to take long walks (in the city), ride a bike (in the city), and swim (also in the city). She likes movies and reading, of course! For more information, visit her website at http://amyhest.com/.
Lauren Castillo grew up in small town Maryland, but now spends her time in the bustling borough of Brooklyn, New York, writing and illustrating books for children. She likes exploring the city, daydreaming in parks, doodling in cafes, and spying cute dogs on the street. Visit her website at and her blog at. Drop by and say “hello” any time!
I absolutely adored this book! The writing style was unique, the illustrations were gorgeous and The Reader reminded me of all the fun I used to have in the snow when I was a child! Since we are in AZ and very rarely see even one flake of snow, my kids have to get their fix by reading stories that take place in the winter! My kids also aren’t used to bundling up in the winter with boots and snow coats. They thought The Reader’s outfit was so cute and he looked very prepared for the cold weather! This was the perfect book to read while snuggling on the couch and wishing it was just a little bit colder outside! I was able to send in interview questions for the author and was so pleased to hear her answers. Here is the interview:
1 – How did you come up with the concept of calling the boy “the reader”? I thought it was very clever!
I love calling the boy “the reader,” because that’s the whole point of this book! He IS that brand-new and very proud READER. It defines him.
2 – Is the dog in the story based on a pet of yours?
The dogs in a lot of my stories are based upon a very particular dog named Billy. In actual fact, he’s my daughter’s dog, but he spends a great deal of time with me. We are indeed “two good friends.” Billy is a wheaten terrier, and he is perfect in every way. SOMETIMES!
3 – Have you worked with the illustrator before? And did the illustrations convey the message of the book?
I have not worked with Lauren before, but please let her know that I can’t WAIT to work with her again! I adore the illustrations in THE READER. Every page, every gesture on every page, is pitch-perfect.
4 – Is the boy in the book based on anyone in your life?
The boy in the book is just like ME. I am certainly THE READER, and if Billy the wheaten would sit still for a moment, I would probably read to him, as well. But some dogs, as you know, simply won’t.
5 – Did you grow up in an area where you could go sledding and did that inspire you to write this book?
I did some sledding as a child, yes, but mostly I was way too scared on those big hills . . . .
6 – Is “Two Good Friends” an actual book? I love the ending where they are reading together!
I made up the title of the book “Two Good Friends.” It seemed just right for THIS boy to be reading THAT book to THAT little dog!
Here is the schedule for the remaining dates of the Blog Tour!
Mon, Nov 5 – Pen and Oink AND A Mom’s Take: http://penandoink.com/ and https://www.amomstake.com/
Tues, Nov 6 – Mouse Grows, Mouse Learns: http://learningwithmouse.blogspot.com/
Wed, Nov 7 – Susan Heim on Parenting: http://susanheim.blogspot.com/
Thur, Nov 8 – 5 Minutes for Books: http://www.5minutesforbooks.com/
Fri, Nov 9 – The Children’s Book Review: http://www.thechildrensbookreview.com/
Mon, Nov 12 – Media Darlings: http://www.mdarlings.com/
Tues, Nov 13 – Kid Lit Frenzy: http://www.kidlitfrenzy.com/
Wed, Nov 14 – Cracking the Cover: http://www.crackingthecover.com/
Thurs, Nov 15 – Adventures in Mommydom: http://adventuresinmommydom.org/
Fri, Nov 16 – Momma Drama: http://blogginmommadrama.blogspot.com/
The Reader was written by Amy Hest. It is geared for ages 4 and up and can be purchased on Amazon. It retails for $16.99 and is 34 pages long.
One A Mom’s Take readers will win
a “The Reader” Children’s Book
Ends 11/26/2012 at 11:59 PM ET. Open to US Only.
– Rules –
Disclosure: I received “The Reader” Children’s Book in exchange for my honest review. I was not compensated in any other manner. The opinions expressed above are my own and any claims should be verified on the sponsor’s site.