Celeste and the Adorable Kitten

Celeste and the Adorable Kitten

Celeste and the Adorable Kitten

How would you like to win a copy of Melly’s new book, Celeste and the Adorable Kitten? (I even have a bit part in it and Flopsy the Killer Cat is one of the main characters!) All you have to do is comment on this post and agree to write a review of the book on amazon.com. It doesn’t even have to be a nice review.

Ten lucky people will be selected at random and notified via email.

Capybaras in Japan are Reading Celeste!

Harry the Capybara

I was so excited when my friend Neighboring Wild (@nbwild) sent me a link to his blog showing capybaras and other animals reading my book, Celeste and the Giant Hamster! Look how cute little Harry is in the photo above. He even has a little tuft of hair on his forehead just like I do! Of course he’s still a baby so the zookeeper has to read the book to him. Plus it might be scary a little for a baby capybara to read alone.

The blog is in Japanese but even if you don’t understand the words, the photos are priceless.

Don’t forget to pick up your own version of Celeste and the Giant Hamster either on Amazon or here.

Georgetown Book Festival

Owner’s Blog

Table display for Celeste and the Giant Hamster

Table display for Celeste and the Giant Hamster

As hard as it was to pull myself away from Caplin for a whole day, I spent this past Saturday at a book festival in Georgetown, Texas. It’s coming up on the holiday season and it seemed like a good idea to get Celeste and the Giant Hamster out in the public eye. This is the first book festival I’ve ever attended, either as an author/participant or as library patron, even though I am an avid reader. I paid my twenty bucks and got my own table, shown above.

Sadly, the book festival people refused to allow Caplin to come, even for an hour or so, to entertain the festival goers. That was a mistake on their part because Caplin would have really livened up the place! Instead I had to use some stand-up cut-outs of him as surrogate capybaras. (I got the standups made at PartyStandups.com. If you’d like a Caplin standup, drop me a comment and let me know what photo you’re going to use so I can send you the full resolution image.)

The real Human Celeste and the fake Caplin Rous

The real Human Celeste and the fake Caplin Rous

That worked out okay but what I didn’t realize is that I should have marked each of the three stand-ups–one of baby Caplin, one of Caplin at four months and one of adult Caplin–as all being life-sized. Instead I had to tell everyone that when they came up to my desk. Maybe that actually worked better because it was fun to see their expressions of astonishment. (Although they would have been even more astonished by the real Caplin Rous.)

Celeste, my granddaughter and the impetus for writing the book, came and spent a little time with me. But mostly she went to the other book festival activities like the magic show and story-telling. She and the other kids seemed to have a great time. But the meet-the-authors part of the festival was tucked away in a room upstairs and there were no activities up there. For example, a live capybara activity would have been great. Or they could have just had short book-readings. Or they could have had authors talking to kids about what it is like to write.

But, alas, the meet-the-authors section was not well attended. Nevertheless, I had a great time. I met some interesting people, gave out a lot of cards for this blog, talked about capybaras to everyone, and had interesting discussions with some of my fellow authors.

I also gave away many copies of the capybara coloring pages and some kids even colored them at my table (I colored two myself!). If you colored one of the pages, please send me a scan of it to post here, you can use the Contact tab on the left sidebar. It would be great to see your artistic endeavors.

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The Meet-the-Authors room at the book festival.

And I learned that Georgetown, Texas has a totally awesome library. It has wonderful open stacks, great art in the hallways and sculpture outside, an actual café in the library with great food. But the best part is the children’s section. It has a South American jungle theme with murals painted on all the walls.

Mural including a capybara in children's section of Georgetown library

Mural including a capybara in children's section of Georgetown library

Please notice the capybara peeking out of the grass near the bottom left corner. How great is that? Of course, whoever painted it had no idea how large capybaras are because that one would be a midget. Or maybe the jaguar is a giant. Or maybe nothing is drawn to scale. At any rate, I would love to do a book reading / capybara encounter and have Caplin in front of that mural. I donated a copy of the book to the library and gave them one of Caplin’s cards. Hopefully they’ll contact me about it.

Book Reading at Kyle, TX Library

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A Visit to the Kyle, Texas library

Me with Chelsea and Cayla at Kyle Library

Me with Chelsea and Cayla at Kyle Library

Last Friday my owner and I took a quick trip down the the Kyle Public Library to see if they were interested in us doing one of our book reading/capybara encounters.  Before the library opened, I met with some new friends, Shirley Bauder and her two granddaughters Chelsea and Cayla. Shirley took all the photos you see in this post.  (Thanks!) I loved having the kids feed me blueberries, which are one of my very favorite treats.

When the library opened, they asked me if I could stay until 10:30, which is story time for the little kids. Well, we weren’t very prepared but then you don’t have to be when you have a cute animal like me around to provide the entertainment.

My owner got to talk a little bit about Celeste and the Giant Hamster, although it is really for an older audience than we had. And she gave a copy to the library so that all the local kids can read it. Plus we got invited back for an official book reading/capybara encounter. We still have to pick a time and date for that. I will let y’all know when it is settled.

This brings me to a point:

If you would like to have me and my owner visit your local library or your classroom, just drop us a line via the contact button on the left sidebar. We love teaching people about capybaras and rodents in general. If you are a 3-5th grade class and have read my book, I would LOVE to come and talk to you. (My owner needs constant positive feedback or she gets all paranoid that no one likes the book.)