Monday, March 28, 2011


If you have not made time to read Patrick Carman's multimedia books, I would highly suggest doing so. Patrick Carman is committed to creating multimedia books that hook readers and keep them reading. He has really done some amazing work and he has created some great stories that use so many types of media. The first book I read was SKELETON CREEK. I reviewed it on the blog right away and was excited to see how seamlessly Carman had integrated the various forms of media.  This series has been hugely popular in the library since its publication.  The newer series that Carman created is the TRACKERS series. This one was more of a spy novel and I reviewed the first book in the series on the blog last year.

Patrick Carman's new project is very exciting.  He has created a series of short stories called 3:15. These stories require that you LISTEN, READ AND WATCH.  This 3:15 series is published as an APP.    The first episode, "Buried Treasure" has been released.  There is a new episode due to be released every 2 weeks through summer.  Then Season 2 Begins with more episodes.  If you enjoyed Jon Scieszka's EXQUISITE CORPSE ADVENTURE creation, where you wait for a new online episode to be released, this follows  a similar idea.  One big difference in this and The Exquisite Corpse is that each episode in 3:15 is a stand alone story. The first episode is free and the second episode of 3:15 is due out tomorrow--March 29. It is called, "Reflecting Pool".  It sounds like all of the stories will be published in a book this coming fall from Scholastic.  Lots of ways for kids to discover these stories. I love that about Carman-he seems to be committed to giving kids many ways into reading.
A 20+ page text tells most of the story and
leads the reader to the video ending.

I spent some time with the first episode, "Buried Treasure" and really enjoyed it. I also handed it to my 11 year old daughter when I was finished it and she thoroughly enjoyed it and wondered when the next episode was due out.  Here is how it works.  When you get to the app on the ipod/iphone, you have 3 things to do. First, you LISTEN to the set up of the story told by a narrator.  Then you READ for about 10 minutes. The text is about 22 ipod size pages and this part tells the bulk of the story. When you are finished with the text, you go to WATCH and view the video that tells the ending to the story.  I love this.

When I first read SKELETON CREEK, the only part that bothered me was moving from book to computer.  I hated putting my book down to get to the computer. But Patrick Carman has perfected all of this and has figured out how to put all parts of the book into an app so you can experience each on the ipod or ipad.

These stories are a bit scary. Ghost stories.  I have had difficulty lately finding enough "Scary Stories" for kids in the library who love them. These will definitely appeal to kids who love the SCARY STORIES TO TELL IN THE DARK series and authors like Mary Downing Hahn.

I think there are so many more possibilities for reading today and I am so glad that Patrick Carman has committed to this work with Multimedia. He has a great video on his website that better explains all of this called, How a Multimedia Book Works. He also has a great clip on his thinking about Books and Tech.

Patrick Carman really seems to have discovered new possibilities for storytelling.  Whether you are already a fan of his work or not (I am, can you tell?), check out his new series of apps, 3:15. I am already looking forward to Episode 2 which is available on March 29.


  1. Must Get i-Phone! That app sounds so cool. I'll bet my granddaughter would love it, too. I'm giving away a copy of Kristin Hannah's "Night Road" this week if you're interested ...

  2. Welcome back Franki and Mary Lee! (Hope you had a good week away.)


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