In your own words, describe your book…
If You Were Me And Lived In…Norway- is part of a non fiction series written for children aged 3-8. There are five published with five more in production. The countries covered are Mexico, France, South Korea, Norway, Turkey, and Kenya. Waiting to be finished are Australia, India, Portugal, Argentina, and Greece. If You Were Me and Lived in…Mexico has received the Pinnacle Award for Best in Children’s non fiction 2012.
What inspired you to write this book?
I was walking on Las Vegas Blvd. with my grandchildren and we discussed the different themes of all the hotels. Aged 5, 3, and 1 year- they were delighted learning about landmarks in Paris, Egypt, Italy, and such. This led to a spirited discussion about the food, as well as other observations about the differences in our cultures. I was a social studies teacher over forty years ago, and decided that this idea of this book was a great way to introduce cultures and customs around the world to small children.
Will this book be a standalone or part of the series?
All the books can be stand alone. They all consider about ten basic things that children can relate to in the country they are reading about. It describes where the country is located with one fact about the main city or capital. Then, I looked for things such as names, what you would call your parents, what type of currency they use, a famous landmark, a holiday- things that any child could relate to. I stayed away from religion and politics, and kept it very basic. The language is simple, and an educator can then decide to expand or edit the facts to suit the needs of the child. Each page could be a gateway to project of food, clothes, climate, language; really anything a teacher or parent may want to explore with a child.
What message would you like to convey with this book?
Though the world is large, we are all so much alike in so many ways. I am astounded by the similar names we have for our parents in different languages. “Mama, Dada, Papa, Baba”, children can see how familiar so many things are. On the flip side, it’s interesting to discover and explore our differences. Knowledge illuminates the darkness of ignorance. If the books teach tolerance and understanding and even a bit a friendship, than I think they did their job.
What books are similar to this one?
I haven’t seen anything remotely similar to this series. I am very proud of that. When I tested it out in schools, teachers were overjoyed with the product, because they all felt there was nothing relatable for young children out there. This is series that gives them something to grasp, so they can then understand the concept of customs and culture. In some cases in our very varied population, it gives a child a chance to relate where their ancestors come from.
Where can readers find your book?
All of the books are available on Amazon.com, Barnes and Noble.com as well as Kindle, and Kindle Fire.
Can you tell us some about the writer behind the book?
I am having the best time of my life. I have worked since I am sixteen, from cashier, to secondary ed teacher, to a business person running a very large family business. Writing has given me a whole second wind, and when I get the privilege of reading to my audience, it a total joy. I love seeing the children’s eyes light up with interest. I also want to add, that I chose countries where I had never been and learned so much about them. Most of the information came from people who own the restaurants and stores in our neighborhood. They were delighted to share, and took pride in the finished product.
Tell us one thing about you we wouldn’t know?
I love writing reviews on books that I read. I never noticed the reviews on Amazon until I published and they became important to me. I was just ranked yesterday in the top ten thousand for being helpful and am very excited about that. I am enjoying that I can influence someone to read a book that they might not have considered.
How can readers connect with you?
I answer any emails- email@example.com. They can also see what is going on through my web page www.caroleproman.com or my blog caroleproman.blogspot.com.
What are you working on now?
I have just finished Turkey and Greece and am waiting for the proofs.
Do you have any other books released? What is your next release?
My other series Captain No Beard will be releasing Book 5 “The Treasure of Snake Island” and “The Crew Goes Coconuts!” this fall and winter. I love this series. It is based on a game I play with my grandchildren and teaches values like sharing, tolerance, patience playfully. It also touches hot topics like bullying and stranger danger. The first book in the series, Captain No Beard- An Imaginary Tale of a Pirate’s Life, has received the Pinnacle Award 2012, as well as The Star of Remarkable Merit, and it was named to Kirkus Reviews Best of 2012. The second book in the series, Pepper Parrot’s Problem with Patience, received Five Stars from the ForeWord Review Clarion Review. It’s a fun series and both children and parents have embraced it’s gentle lessons laced with humor.
I am finishing up the rest of the culture books, India, Australia, Greece, Portugal (picked by a winner in a contest,) and Argentina. I try to spread myself all over the globe- so that each “corner” gets some attention. If the books sell, I will do as many as I can. I love this series and think it fills a spot in any classroom, bridging the cultures of the world to be an opening for a lifelong love of exploration and education.