Stewie Boomstein Starts School (Review)
Daughter of Borders Books Co-founder Pens
First Book, Stewie Boomstein Starts School
by Christine Bronstein, Karen Young (Illustrator)
Larkspur, CA, June 20, 2014 – Being the daughter of Borders Books co-founder Louis Borders, Christine Bronstein grew up in a world of books. But instead of inspiring her to become a writer, it intimidated her. Therefore, it wasn’t until she married journalist Phil Bronstein that Chris felt confident enough to pen Stewie Boomstein Starts School.
“When Borders was still in our family, it was a different world for publishers and writers. Only very established writers were published,” says Chris. But that point of view changed, especially after she married journalist Phil Bronstein, former editor of the San Francisco Chronicle and currently Executive Chair of the Center for Investigative Reporting.
“He opened up the possibility of being a writer,” says Chris. “He has supported and helped me develop as a writer over the last ten years. And living with a professional editor is a definite advantage.”
Based on Chris’ experience with her own children, and her interviews with child specialists, Stewie Boomstein Starts School is about dealing with the fear of the unknown that many children feel on their first day of school and how parents can help turn this often traumatic transition into an exciting journey and familial bonding experience.
The book’s illustrator, Rhode Island School of Design alum Karen Young, wishes Stewie Boomstein Starts School was available when her daughter, Grace, started pre-school six years ago.
Karen says: “Grace’s first week in pre-school was terrible. She cried every day for an hour not wanting me to leave. I literally stood by the door--out of sight watching her--until she stopped crying and started to play. Thank goodness her teachers were so wonderful.”
Chris actually came up with the story for Stewie Boomstein Starts School (Publication date: August 5, 2014) back in 2009. But being busy raising her children, and starting a private online social network, A Band of Women, and her own publishing company, Nothing But the Truth, was all-consuming.
In 2013, Karen Young moved in next door to Chris in Marin County, California, where Chris and her family live. In March of 2014, Chris shared her Stewie story with Karen, who had worked as an art therapist, and asked her if she’d like to illustrate it. Karen immediately fell in love with the story and started sketching. Four months later, they had Stewie Boomstein Starts School ready for publication.
Media interviews and author or illustrator events are being scheduled for Stewie Boomstein Starts School, which is officially being published on Tuesday, August 5th. Chris Bronstein is already booked for an author event at the Norwalk Public Library in Norwalk, Connecticut on Saturday, August 16th, at 2 PM. Prior to that, Chris and Karen will be in Los Angeles from August 8-14 and available for author and illustrator interviews. Additional media and author appearances are planned for San Francisco and New York City.
My Thoughts: Personally, I love the book. It would have been a wonderful read for me when I was a little girl. I was so scared to start school. I had never been away from my parents, and I had a very hard time with it. Although my son, Braxton is starting second grade and has no trouble with school (thankfully) he absolutely loves this book. I think it creates a sort of empathy in him for the children who are struggling. Braxton is able to see that some kids have a harder time adjusting to school than he has. The book has stunning colorful illustrations and is a great read for everyone!
Stewie Boomstein Starts School is available through such major wholesalers as Ingram and Baker & Taylor wherever books are sold, online or brick-and-mortar retail stores including amazon.com, bn.com, Powells.com, and City Lights Bookstore, or directly from the publisher.
Disclaimer: I received a copy of this book to review and to keep. All opinions are my own.