April 20, 2009
by Carol Politi
Longer term readers will know that one of our initiatives at kajeet is to find ways we can use the phone to promote tween reading. I’m an avid reader, and this particular project is a pet project of mine.
As part of this quest we have teamed up with Penguin books and have launched the news about their newest The English Roses book – The Runaway Rose – on our phone. In addition to providing a bit of information about the book, we are giving away free wallpapers that can be used as screensavers.
If you are not familiar with The English Roses series, it is authored by Madonna and is a real hit with tween girls. Here is a quick peek at The Runaway Rose from their website:
“Amy’s absolutely thrilled when her mum gets her an after-school job working behind the scenes at Marks & Spencer Teen Fashionista week; it seems a perfect opportunity to polish her design skills and cultivate her true passion for fashion! But when a talent scout convinces Amy that she should actually appear on the runway as a model for the big show, things start to fall apart. Suddenly, Amy finds herself hanging with the beautiful people, and her head gets more than a little inflated as a result. What’s worse, she begins ditching the English Roses to hang with her fashionable new friends! The Roses have to wonder if she’s getting a wee bit big for her designer britches! Will Amy abandon her four best friends to follow the fashionista crowd forever?”
A really interesting trend in tween and teen literature is to pair each book series with its own website and social experience. In this case, Penguin has launched myenglishroses.net. This tie between the book and the computer is intended to make books more relevant to kids. It is great to have a place for kids to go to get more context on the author and to generally add more depth to the reading experience. In addition to providing information on the other books in the series, this site also offers fun crafts, horoscopes, and quizzes on the book.
Madonna has actually written six picture books for children, The English Roses, Mr. Peabody’s Apples, Yakov and the Seven Thieves, The Adventures of Abdi, Lotsa de Casha, and The English Roses: Too Good To Be True. The English Roses is a series – and Runaway Rose is book number 9.
How do you get your kids interested in reading? Please let us know!