Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Award-winning series for children shows Tator the Gator why reading is important

Sometimes, reluctant readers just need a little convincing, and that’s certainly the case in the newest title from the acclaimed Apple Bunch Books book series.

"Tator’s Swamp Fever" by Diane Shapley-Box brings back familiar friends Tator the Gator, Perdie the Birdie, Cabbit the Rabbit, and Fred the Frog while relaying an important message: reading is not just a fun activity but also an important asset.
The lovable characters in Diane’s books live in an all-American apple-harvesting town. The friends experience fun filled adventures as they travel across America.

As "Tator’s Swamp Fever" begins, Fred the Frog is excited because his book club is meeting and he has a new book to share. Fred invites Tator to attend the book club meeting with him, but Tator replies, "Reading books is not for me. I have no need at all. Everything I need to know I learned when I was small."

But, of course, this isn’t really true, as Tator learns when his mom comes down with the alligator flu. Tator and his friends travel to the swamplands and find a wise old albino alligator who lends Tator a book from his library.

Following the instructions in Cures For A Gator, they collect native ingredients for a stew to help cure Tator’s mom. Tator realizes reading can be fun and useful.

Shapley-Box comments, "Tator the Gator, who is always thoughtful and kind, is one of my favorite characters from the Apple Bunch Books book series. I wrote this tale because I wanted to encourage reading while learning about the swamplands."

Like all the books in the series, "Tator’s Swamp Fever" boasts bright, colorful illustrations and lively rhymes. The book concludes with a Fun Facts section that teaches children interesting facts about alligators and other swamp creatures.
Shapley-Box’s books have won first place in many contests, including the Moonbeam Children’s Book Awards, The North Texas Book Festival, and The Press Women of Texas. The Apple Bunch Book series has been featured on The Good Day show on Fox and was one of the top ten Made in Texas picks in Houston Family Magazine.

Author: Diane Shapley-Box is a graduate of The Art Institute of Dallas. She has worked as a concept designer and professional illustrator for individuals, newspapers, and a corporation before creating the Apple Bunch Book series. Diane has lived in many places across the United States. Her experiences inspire her to create adventures that introduce interesting destinations across America while stressing the need for kindness and helpfulness.

Tator’s Swamp Fever by Diane Shapley-Box; Apple Pie Publishing; Category: Children’s Picture Book; Hard Cover: 978-0692208472, $17.99; Availability: www.applepiepub.comboutiques, gift shops, and museums nationwide

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