There once lived a cute little robot elf that wanted to be a toy so badly he stowed away in Santa’s sack and found children to play with. “Elfbot” is his story. And the story is available not only in print, but also in an interactive storytelling digital book for tablets, phones and e-readers.
The story is presented digitally on Nook, the Barnes and Noble e-readers and tablet series. Viewing it on the Nook is easy enough as it is built right in. But there is no need to rush out and buy a Nook to be able to enjoy this book. The Nook app is available on the Apple iTunes App Store and the Google Play Store. The book cannot be purchased direct from the app, but if purchased on the computer or Nook, it can be synced to download on other devices.
The storytelling book isn’t just for kids, either. With the talents of Jim Cummings (voice of Winnie the Pooh, Tigger, Ray the Firefly), Jane Lynch (voice of Calhoun in “Wreck It Ralph”) and Mark Hamill (voice of the Joker, and he played Luke Skywalker in “Star Wars”) and an original score by Kenny G, this book is not one to disappoint.
To celebrate the release of the digital book, Barnes and Noble in Glendale held a live book reading and signing with Jim Cummings and Kenny G playing the score. Kenny played Christmas carols for the audience gathered in the store last Friday night before the reading began and then played along with the voice actors during the show. After the show, CV Weekly had a chance to speak with Jim Cummings regarding the new project.
“You know its good when [it comes] ‘out of the mouths of babes,’” said Cummings. “I’ve got a 7-year-old and a 5-year-old, and my 7-year-old, Gracie, had not heard it yet until just the other day when we performed it live at Barnes and Noble in Glendale. It started up and Kenny started playing the theme song and the music, and the graphics were up and my little 7-year-old looks at me and goes, ‘Oh daddy, it’s just so beautiful. It feels like Christmas.’”
In addition to Gracie, many others in attendance were just as captivated by the story and music.
“I can tell you one thing, Barnes and Noble sold out of them on the very first night, so I’m feeling really good about that, and its new technology. It’s something for our eyes and our ears, yet it’s something you can hold in your hand if you get a Nook. I think everybody ought to pick up at least a six pack.”
This new form of entertainment is seen more and more each year. Many families read on Nook or iPad more often than books because of their ease of use and portability. Just as games are bought en masse each Christmas for gaming consoles, a new wave of digital gifts is becoming prevalent – chief among them storybooks for children.
“I think its very much a great gift for a child because its got just enough of that Gizmo Factor, and if a child doesn’t like to read, you can say ‘Hey well what about this?’ Its kind of like an iPad, its kind of like something they can fool around with. Its not a video game but its got qualities that will draw you in as such, and its not a storybook but it sure has great storybook qualities, so I think its kind of a new wrinkle for us here, a new way to enjoy the sound and music and visuals and its still like reading a good old Christmas story classic Its got one foot in the past and clearly one foot in the present and the future as well. I wouldn’t be surprised if we see a few more of these.”
This is a great story and will hopefully become a classic in years to come. For more information or to purchase the book, visit bn.com and download the Nook app to your tablet and smartphone. Whether you want books or magazines or audio books, the Nook app is a great system for any device. And scan the QR code below to hear Kenny G playing Christmas carols at the Barnes and Noble event.