Thursday, December 06, 2012


Amazon's latest announcement has two interesting aspects: They are bundling digital children's content across media into a combined "library" or subscription, and they are broadly selling that subscription to all customers, not just Prime "members." Called Kindle FreeTime Unlimited, the all-in-one subscription service works on any Kindle Fire device and will be available as part of an automatic OS software update "in the coming weeks." The package features books, games, educational apps, movies and TV shows focused on children ages 3-8. Amazon Prime members get preferred pricing--$2.99/month per individual child (or $6.99 per family)--but others can subscribe for $4.99/month (or $9.99 per family.)
Andrews McMeel Publishing, Chronicle Books, DC Comics, Disney, HIT Entertainment, Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, Marvel, Nickelodeon, PBS, Reading Rainbow, and Sesame Workshop are among the companies making their content available for Kindle FreeTime Unlimited. Chris Van Allsburg’s “Jumanji” and Barbara Lehman’s “The Red Book" are among the available picture books, along with those featuring characters like Big Nate, Ivy and Bean, Phineas & Ferb, Shrek, and Kung Fu Panda. The service also includes ebook apps and in-book games from characters such as Thomas & Friends, Looney Tunes, Scooby-Doo, Arthur, Duck and Goose, Caillou and Superman, and from award-winning children’s author Sandra Boynton.
The Amazon store currently shows just over 1,000 Kindle ebooks, 329 videos and 157 apps available in the package. When a parent subscribes, titles are shown sorted by their child's age and gender, and parents can control what content the child can access.

Oprah Winfrey's revamped, Occasional Book Club 2.0 has selected Ayana Mathis' debut novel THE TWELVE TRIBES OF HATTIE (Knopf) as its second choice. The book was originally set for publication in mid-January but has been moved up to release today instead. As part of the announcement Oprah said: "The opening pages of Ayana’s debut took my breath away. I can't remember when I read anything that moved me in quite this way, besides the work of Toni Morrison."
Oprah had picked Cheryl Strayed's WILD in June, following the book's publication in March. At the time, she said the OBC2.0 would feature "several selections" through the remainder of 2012.

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