Something To Do

App-y Hour Friday : The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore

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It’s 5 o’clock somewhere.

It also means the weekend is here and time for some Saturday /Sunday R&R (readin and restin) and (drum roll) Appy-Hour!!

Jump Into A Book has been coming across many, many delightful children’s book apps and e-books lately so we’d like to start sharing those with our readers for a new Friday feature. We think reading apps and e-books are like a bridge for families to learn how to balance real books and e books and we firmly believe it is still completely possible to “jump into the pages” of a book, even when there’s no physical book present! The important part is in the READING and creating balance when we choose to use technology in our lives.  Another important thing before we dive into Appy-Hour is that you still take the time to sit down with your child and read together, whether it’s a book, an app, or a read aloud option. When children connect with an adult while doing something enjoyable, the habit sticks.

This week, it’s The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore.

This book is a wonder to behold. The perfect blend of a captivating movie and a really memorable bedtime story. Oftentimes book apps can be confusing. Is it an e-book? Is it a form of edutainment? Is it a game? Is my child too passive during the telling?

The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore harkens back to the days of silent films with the grander of those first technicolor movie classics such as the Wizard of Oz. Each page as a hidden piece of magic embedded to be discovered by those who journey through this soon to be classic.  Something may look familiar to you during your time with this app and that is because of the brilliant work done by William Joyce. He is an accomplished illustrator/animator who created many of the character designs for some of Pixar’s early films. Bringing along all of his talents, and with the help of Moonbot studios, William Joyce has created an incredible experience for you to share with your child. I do have a confession however, and that is I spend a lot of time with this book without my children. It is a tale that speaks deeply to me.

Morris thought he could hear the faint chatter of a thousand different stories, as if each book was whispering an invitation to adventure.”

Unlike many apps, this one is so subtle and intuitive that you don’t even know many of the features are there until you are several pages into the book. I love the way the book opens, with the story starting, no instructions on “how to use” this app, just a story,…plain, and simply wonderful.

Vibrant cues are chosen amidst the very lushly colored graphics sharing what you might want to experience. Everything is left up to the users choice. You don’t have to play the piano on humpty-dumpty, or spin the house in the tornado, or any other activities. You can just relish the books and jump into the story.


Something To Do”

Inside the pages (screen) of this imaginative tale, Mr. Morris Lessmore leaves us with an invitation to color our world through the reading and caring of books. Each book read is a gateway into our imaginations leaving us eternally changed by seeing life more vividly that perhaps we had before.

It’s Time For the Mr. Morris Lessmore Book Swap!

Come One, Come All, to a Give a Book, Get A Book Swap….

It’s time to clear out the shelves from your voracious reading habit. Looking for something new to read? There is no better way than to swap a few books with your friends for a few new ones.

We love to host book swaps. Make sure if you’re the one hosting the swap that you have a table long enough to hold all of the books or place them into crates by categories or age groups. I like the table idea because I can just lay them out and the kids can walk around choosing from the entire selection.

Have your guests bring 5 books or any other number of books. Five seems to be the max though any more than that and it gets a bit crazy.

Here’s some clever ways of deciding who goes first, second, and so on;

  • Hand out numbered tickets
  • Let the Book Swappers choose a number from a deck of interesting playing cards or throw dice
  • Choose rhymes such as ieeny, meeny, minny, mo etc.

Once we have our choosing list, the first numbered child gets to walk around the table and choose their first book. Continue through the list of kids .

After the first round, see which books were chosen and see if anyone has read it and what they thought of it. We call this book hawking. The person who read it is trying to give a good hard sell to their friend on why they should read it too. It’s always fun to have the parents involved as well because many of us have read some of these books as children and adults. It’s a fun way to have a light-hearted book conversation.

Continue through the list of children until each child has 5 different books than the ones they came with.

After our swapping, and book-hawking, we’re usually famished so it’s time for some literary treats! We like to use Roald Dahl’s Revolting Treats, The Laura Ingall’s Wilder Cookbook, The Beatrix Potter Cookbook, and on really wild days, The Harry Potter Cookbook to create some crazy book-ish treats.

p.s.  I’m always looking for great edible book treats so if you know of any please consider sharing!

Our household has also been known to have an edible book cake contest on the same days as our book swaps, but that tale I will leave for another day.

“Remember to read your books so they keep their life and color, and as you do, they will color your life too.”

Has your family, neighborhood, or community ever created a Book Swap? If so, please share your tips and experience in the comment box below. Happy Book Swapping !!!!

Valarie Budayr is the founder of Audrey Press and author of the books The Fox Diaries: The Year the Foxes Came to our Garden and The Ultimate Guide To Charlie and The Chocolate Factory. She is passionate about making kid’s books come alive and when she isn’t jumping into a book and creating wildly inventive adventures, she is “mom” to three uber creative children, married to a wonderfully patient man who has come to love yarn, proud owner of one adored cat, and the Fox Whisperer to lots and lots of Foxes (that come and go as they please). You can also find Valarie on Facebook or on Twitter at @Bookjumper.




3 thoughts on “App-y Hour Friday : The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore

  1. I saw a sneak preview of The Fantastic Fly Books trailer a couple months ago and was in awe. William Joyce’s studio created a beautiful piece of vintage-look cinema with bits of humor tucked in. Lovely piece of work. I didn’t know it was to be made into an app so you shared some new news with me today!

  2. While I was in NYC this week, I got to meet William Joyce. He’s a really nice man and I got to hear the backstory of this film and app. Really interesting. I just love this app. It’s so inviting and lovely.

  3. The book swap party Sound lie faun thing to do, have to keep that in mind, and find some opportunities to do it.

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