Monday, November 12, 2012

The Silent History - It's an App - It's a Book - It's Awesome

Field Report Locations
The Silent History is "a new kind of novel." The App itself is free, but then you have to pay for the books within the App. The book is serialized and each installment is delivered to your iDevice on a daily basis (except weekends). You must wait 8 (painful) hours between each piece of the story.

A science fiction novel set in the future about a phenomenon of "Silent" children, children who are born without speech. The story is told through "witnesses" who recount their various experiences with these kids. Each episode features a different perspective at a different point in history. There are 6 books which tell the story from 2011 - 2043. You can purchase the books separately for 1.99 or all 6 for $8.99.

Field Report from South Beach, Miami FL
In addition to the story itself. The App uses geolocation to point you to "Field Reports." In order to read a field report, you must be in exactly the spot where it was written. Thus far I have been able to access three reports. One led me to a clearing in the woods above a middle school not to far from where I teach. The other two were on South Beach in Miami. (I was able to check them out when I was down there for my my Grandmother's birthday.) The reports themselves rely heavily on you being in that spot. It is a pretty creepy and cool experience to stand there and read them.

In many ways this is a book like any other, yet reading it this way makes it something entirely different. If you start now you will be able to marathon through the first book (lucky you) and a little bit of the second. Then you will be just like me, waiting each day for the next installment.

I think this is a brilliant idea that has great potential. Children's books in this form could really help kids get excited about reading! I am certainly loving it.

If you do start reading the series, let me know what you think.
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