Monday, September 29, 2014

Children's eBook Review: A Brand New Day, by A.S. Chung, illustrated by Paula Bossio

Illustrations: 5 Stars 
Cover: Stars
Storyline: 4.5 Stars
Total: 5 Stars

Summary: A little girl enjoys time with both her Dad and her Mom, even though they are divorced and live in different houses. Most importantly, she knows they love her! A cozy, warm picture book.

Illustrations: The illustrations are so adorable, I want to squeeze them. Definitely 5 stars.

Storyline: With all the children in divorced families these days, it is a good theme for those children to remember: focus on the positive, like the girl in this story, and remember that their parents love them even though they live in different homes. The short text is perfect for young children. 4.5 stars

Author A.S. Chung was kind enough to answer some questions:

VH: How do you decide what to write about?
ASC: My writing stems from what I staunchly believe in and from personal experiences. I am all about preaching positive messages and the importance of love and family.

VH: How did you find your illustrator?
ASC: An advertisement in the paper, looking for an illustrator! By gosh we found a gem! Not only is she talented, she has an uncanny knack of interpreting my words beautifully.

VH: Did you create your own publishing company, how and why?ASC: Yes I did! Pigeonhole Books is a project very close to my heart. Dealing with important subjects such as divorce as well as same-sex, blended and multiracial families, I really wanted to have complete control of the book.

As for how, a lot of research and finding the medium that would suit me from a creative and financial
point of view. Print on Demand distribution was perfect for me.

VH: What are your favorite books (children's books and otherwise)?
ASC: I grew up reading Enid Blyton (see Blyton's adventure series collection and a mysteries series collection here). Despite all the revelations about her writing styles in present day, I saw none of her racism and sexism when I was reading them. She always managed to immerse me into a world of pure imagination. It is no wonder that I then progressed onto Roald Dahl (see Dahl's Matilda and James and the Giant Peach here). I love that I am now reading these books to my daughter, allowing me to re-live my childhood!

As an adult, my all-time favourite genre is fantasy. Books that allow me to escape out of the real world as I immerse myself into a makeshift bubble of silence! David Eddings was my first true love (see Eddings' Pawn of Prophecy, first book in the Belgariad series), with Raymond E. Feist not very far behind (see Feist's Shadow of a Dark Queen, first book in the SerpantWar Saga, and Flight of the Nighthawks, first book in the Darkwar Saga).

I read all the classics too. I have a bookshelf about to burst at the seams filled with books of all kinds of genres. I can sometimes have four books on the go, depending on my mood!

VH: What advice do you have for people who want to write children's books?ASC: Just do it! The writing part is easy. If you had the inclination to do in the first place, you have already formulated a manuscript in your head. The hard part is getting it out there, the dos and don’ts and the right and wrong way to go about it. But in the end, just give it a go. If anything, allow it to satisfy your inner desire to put words on paper. It’s incredibly exciting!

VH: What's your favorite part of being a writer?
ASC: My favourite part is seeing my message being interpreted by readers exactly as I had intended. My book is only 800 words. I had to find a way to express my message succinctly.

You can connect with A.S. Chung and see her books on Pigeonhole Publishing, her author website, on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, and Goodreads.

Thank you A.S. Chung,

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