Posted by: Kathy Temean | July 2, 2020

Book Giveaway: UNICORN YOGA by Gina Cascone & Bryony Williams-Sheppard

Gina Cascone & Bryony Williams Sheppard has written a new picture book titled, UNICORN YOGA. Illustrated by Jennifer Sattler and published by Sleeping Bear Press. SBP has agreed to share a copy with one lucky winner. All you have to do to get in the running is to leave a comment. Reblog, tweet, or talk about it on Facebook with a link and you will get additional chances to win. Just let me know the other things you do to share the good news, so I can put in the right amount of tickets in my basket for you.

Sharing on Facebook, Twitter, reblogging really helps spread the word for a new book. Thanks for helping Gina, Bryony, and Jennifer!

If you have signed up to follow my blog and it is delivered to you everyday, please let me know when you leave a comment and I will give you an extra ticket. Thanks!

BOOK DESCRIPTION:

The healing, restorative power of yoga has been known for centuries, and more people than ever are active practitioners. Now even the youngest of readers can learn this mind and body exercise, helping them set up a lifetime of healthy habits. Through clear, easy-to-follow instructions, a unicorn yogi, along with two energetic students, leads children through a ten-pose class. Kid-friendly back matter provides additional information on yoga, as well as tips on mindfulness, encouraging readers to develop their own daily practice.

BOOK JOURNEY:

Our journey began the day my co-author, Bryony, was born in 1979. I wrote and published my first book, PAGAN BABIES AND OTHER CATHOLIC MEMORIES in 1982. PAGAN BABIES was not a children’s book per se, but it was a humorous, child’s eye view of parochial education. After PAGAN BABIES, I was at a publishing conference where I met an editor who asked if I could write thrillers for young adults. So I got into my teenage mind and wrote about some harrowing teenage surrealism.  My editor moved to another publishing house and she asked for scary chiller stories for middle-grade readers. Bree insists that I have the soul of an eight-year-old boy, so it seemed like a great fit.

In the late 1980s and early 1990s I coauthored seventeen chilllers. The series was called DEADTIME STORIES. It was series writing so I would get a call from my agent who would tell me my publisher wanted three books at a time. The scary part for me is that I had to write them all in 90 days! Bree was in elementary school at the time. I would get my ideas from Bree, our son, who was 4 years older than Bree, and their friends. Just trying to keep up with that herd was enough for any horror story! Bree was always my most valuable resource – not only as a reader and critic, but her humor and emotional support helped to mitigate and writer’s blocks…which were often. The best part of DEADTIME STORIES is talking to the kids. I am so happy and comfortable in the company of children and I loved going to schools and talking about fun stories.

Bree went off to Emerson College graduating with a degree in Theater Education when I wrote another memoir. Having just barely survived Bree’s adolescent years, brought me back to my own years in high school; LIFE AL DENTE: Laughter and Love in and Italian American Family.  The DEADTIME STORIES series was bought by Nickelodeon so I shifted from writing books to writing TV scripts. Transferring stories from books to TV was a real challenge. We had to keep with the storyline but adjust sometimes to fit with the live action. Throughout that process, once again, Bree became my creative consultant.

Bree became a preschool teacher. After earning her Master’s degree in educational psychology she knew how important picture books would be to both entertain and educate her kids. She was sometimes frustrated that she couldn’t find just the right book for her lessons. So, Bree decided that we should write picture books.

But it was Bree’s daughter, our little Sydney Rose, who brought the idea to fruition. When Syd was about six years old, she became obsessed with time zones. “What time is it in China?” “What time is it in Italy?”  “What time is it … What time is it?” Her questions were driving Bree crazy. She told me that she was going to put up a big map covered with clocks set to the correct times so she wouldn’t have to keep doing the math to figure it out. That is how our first picture book came to be. While it may sound cliché, the idea came to me one day in the show. Travel the world in one moment of time. Our first picture book is AROUND THE WORLD RIGHT NOW; three generations of girl brain power. I went from writing memoir, to YA, to middle grade, then picture books. The greatest challenge of writing picture books is the economy of the medium.  To convey an idea that could fill many pages in just a few, well-chosen words to teach, entertain, and inspire is hard work. The reward is the great joy of being able to read an entire book in one sitting to the best audience in the world – children.

After the success of AROUND THE WORLD RIGHT NOW, we wanted to write a picture book for kids about yoga. Yoga provides so many benefits, it seems only logical to introduce the practice to children as early as possible.  We approached our Sleeping Bear editor with a picture book to do just that. She shared it with the wonderfully creative team at Sleeping Bear Press and came back to us with the idea that unicorns might encourage children to become engaged.  The concept was not as far-fetched as our editor feared we might find it. After all, both yogis and unicorns are joyful, playful, and magical. There is an even more concrete correlation. In the Indus River Valley, in India, five-thousand-year-old bronze seals have been found; some depicting yogis and some depicting unicorns.  So we were so lucky that our editor paired us with Jennifer Sattler and UNICORN YOGA was born!  And while our book is being released during these COVID days, we are now doing zoom events with yoga studios, classrooms and other groups. Talking to children and their yogi moms and dads has become such a joyous journey…we always look forward to new adventures!

Bryony Williams Sheppard – By Gina

“My daughter came into this world fist first. Literally. I was there. I saw it.

It was no surprise to me that in addition to being bright and beautiful, my Bryony is strong, determined,  and always full of ideas to be put into action. When Bree decided that “we”  were going to write picture books because she needed them for her classroom, I had no doubt that my career was headed in a new direction. I also had no doubt about my partner’s abilities.  When I wrote books for middle grade and teen readers, Bree was my ‘creative consultant’. It was her creative spirit that drew her to Emerson College where she spent four happy, hard-working years earning her degree in theater education. Bree discovered that her way of expressing creativity was not in performance, or the business of the arts, but in cultivating and nurturing creativity in children.

To that end, she is always looking for new ways to explore avenues of discovery for bright young minds. How grateful I am that she has led me into this wonderful adventure.”

Gina Cascone by Bree –

There are three things to know about Gina Cascone (four, if you count the fact that she has an amazing and brilliant daughter:-). The first is that she loves ice cream. You think you love ice cream… but you don’t. Not like she loves ice cream. She could easily finish multiple banana splits and go back for more. I’m not sure where she puts it all, and I have no idea how she doesn’t get sick.

The second is that she has often stated that being a grandmother is the best job in the world, and she excels at this endeavor. Her love of ice cream can’t hurt the relationship with her grandchildren either. The joy and happiness that fills her heart when her grandchildren walk into the room is both energetic and infectious. She spends time running, playing, reading, and cooking with them, passing on all that she knows. It is one of the many reasons that her grandchildren adore her.

And finally, she is the accomplished author of 32 published books covering many different genres including middle grade and young adult thrillers, memoirs, humor, and now a children’s picture book. She has written a movie and a network TV series as well. In her years, she has taken great pride in creating wonderful stories that fill pages and imaginations all around the world.

JENNIFER’S BIO:

Jennifer Sattler is the award winning author and illustrator of several children’s books including SYLVIE, UH OH, DODO! the popular series CHICK ‘N’ PUG and PIG KAHUNA and FRANKIE THE BLANKIE .This February launched a new line of original board books from Sleeping Bear Press includes Dirty Birdies and Jungle Gym. She grew up outside of Philadelphia and then went on to study painting and drawing at the University of New Hampshire and then the Hope School of Fine Arts at Indiana University in Bloomington. In 1996, she won a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts . Her books have won The Mockingbird Award for picture books and The Georgia Children’s book Award. Jennifer lives in upstate New York.

You can visit Jennifer at www.jennifersattlerbooks.com

Jennifer Sattler didn’t always want to be an author and illustrator. When she was in third grade her teacher, Teacher Marty, mentioned that she was 40 and had never had a cavity. Jennifer thought that Teacher Marty was “ the bees knees” so she decided that she would be a dentist when she grew up and vowed never to have a cavity.

Jennifer went on to become an artist. She pretended to be a grown up for several years, teaching college students how to paint and draw. But when her kids were born, her inner goofball could be contained no longer!  Her passion was making kids laugh and making picture books.

She’s not a dentist. But… still no cavities!

Jennifer was featured on Illustrator Saturday.

Gina and Bryony, thank you for sharing our book and it’s journey with us. I have the book and it is very cute having the unicorn be the teacher and Jennifer always creates such fun illustrations. I know kids will love this book, especially since so many people are doing yoga. I can just see the little kids trying the poses on each page as Mom or Dad read the book with them. Good luck with the book!

Talk tomorrow,

Kathy


Responses

  1. This sounds like a fun book!

    Like

  2. so cute

    Like

  3. Love those unicorns in all the poses! Very cute! Congratulations!

    I tweeted this post already, and follow by email. 🙂

    Like

  4. This is so adorable! Kids will love learning yoga with this book. 🙂 Congrats!

    Like

  5. Adorable! I love the mashup of unicorns and yoga, and I think kids will, too. (I’m signed up for emails, too.)

    Like

  6. I had to see how a unicorn would hold the poses, and I’ve got to say, wow, very impressive! Beautifully done. I love yoga, and this looks like a wonderful book for kids. Congratulations to all.

    Like

  7. Here’s proof that yoga really is for everyone. Thanks for the chance to win a copy of this cool book!
    I’ve tweeted a link to this post: https://twitter.com/carlrscott/status/1278778208620408833, and pinned an image with a link on Pinterest: https://www.pinterest.com.mx/pin/336573772155705030/.
    I also follow daily by email: crs(at)codedivasites(dot)com
    Thanks again, stay safe and happy folks!!

    Like

  8. Love this concept! And I myself are a fan of both unicorns and yoga 🙂

    Like

  9. What a heart-warming story! I’m a blog subscriber and have shared on Twitter – would love a copy of this delightful book!

    Like

  10. Lovely! Not sure when this ends. positive DOT ideas DOT 4you AT gmail DOT com

    Like


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