Living Books series

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Living Books
The Living Books Logo
Parent companyRandom House/Brøderbund
Founded1992
StatusCurrently owned by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Country of originUnited States
LocationEugene, Oregon
San Rafael, California
Novato, California
Tulsa, Oklahoma
Syracuse, New York
Phoenix, Arizona
 
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Living Books
The Living Books Logo
Parent companyRandom House/Brøderbund
Founded1992
StatusCurrently owned by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Country of originUnited States
LocationEugene, Oregon
San Rafael, California
Novato, California
Tulsa, Oklahoma
Syracuse, New York
Phoenix, Arizona

The Living Books series is a series of interactive animated multimedia children's books, first produced by Brøderbund and then spun off into a jointly-owned (with Random House) subsidiary, which were distributed on CD-ROM for Apple Macintosh and Microsoft Windows. The series began with the release of Just Grandma and Me (an adaptation of the book by Mercer Mayer) in 1992; other titles in the series included The Tortoise and the Hare, Arthur's Teacher Trouble (and other adaptations of books by Marc Brown), Dr. Seuss and Berenstain Bears titles.[1] Nicely produced "play-through" videos on most Living Books titles can be found on YouTube and Several former Brøderbund leaders are now releasing the titles on iOS and Android as Wanderful interactive storybooks.

CD-ROMs in the series[edit]

StoryAuthorYearOther Language(s)Notes
Just Grandma and MeMercer Mayer1992
  • Japan (V 1.0)
  • Spain
  • France (V 2.0)
  • Germany (V 2.0)
Version 2.0 released in 1997, which also includes a sandcastle game.
Arthur's Teacher TroubleMarc Brown1993
  • Spain
The Tortoise and the HareAesop (with the Mark Schlichting version)1993
  • Spain
The New Kid on the BlockJack Prelutsky and James Stevenson1993
Ruff's BoneEli Noyes1994
  • Spain
Harry and the Haunted HouseMark Schlichting1994
  • Spain
Arthur's BirthdayMarc Brown1994
  • Spain (V 1.0)
Version 2.0 released in 1997, which also includes two games.
Little Monster at SchoolMercer Mayer1994
  • Spain
The Berenstain Bears Get in a FightStan and Jan Berenstain1995
  • Spain
Dr. Seuss's ABCDr. Seuss1995ABC board game is included.
Sheila Rae, the BraveKevin Henkes1996
  • Spain
Sing-a-Long and a game are included.
The Berenstain Bears in the DarkStan and Jan Berenstain1996Two games are included.
Green Eggs and HamDr. Seuss1996Three games are included.
StellalunaJannell Cannon1996A quiz game is included.
Arthur's Reading RaceMarc Brown1997A board game is included.
The Cat in the HatDr. Seuss1997
Arthur's Computer AdventureMarc Brown1998Five games are included.
D.W. the Picky EaterMarc Brown1998New menu system. Four games are included.

Reception[edit]

Publishers Weekly, in a review of Dr. Seuss' ABC, called that title "one of the best children's CD-ROMs to date" and stated that, "[...] the producers' fondness for Dr. Seuss and their fidelity to his sense of refined silliness spill into every sequence."[2] Simson L. Garfinkel and Beth Rosenberg found that the CD-ROMs played better on Macs than on PCs. Although they found the titles to be of high quality in a market flooded with "questionable" releases for children, they stated that not all of them lived up to the company's educational claims (noting Dr. Seuss' ABC and Arthur's reading Race as exceptions) and felt that the added dialogue supplementing the book's text was sometimes "out of character". [3] Arthur's Teacher Trouble, The Tortoise and the Hare, Ruff's Bone, and Little Monster at School all received a very high score of over 90.00 in the book CD-ROMs Rated by Les Kranz; in the review for Little Monster at School, the graphics and the number of clickable areas were described as positives.[4]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Series Review "THE LIVING BOOKS Series by Living Books/Broderbund." McMath, Chuck. Game Bytes Vol 1. Num. 21. 1994. Retrieved March 24, 2007.
  2. ^ "Multimedia Reviews: Dr. Seuss' ABC". Publishers Weekly (New York: Cahners Publishing Company) 242 (35): 41. 1995-08-28. ISSN 0000-0019. 
  3. ^ Garfinkel, Simson L.; Beth Rosenberg (1998-02-05). "Bringing kids' books to life". Boston Globe Online. Globe Newspaper Company. Retrieved 2009-11-02. 
  4. ^ Kranz, Les (1994). CD-ROMs Rated: A Guide to the Best and Worst CD ROMs & Multimedia Titles. Laura L. Armer, Adrienne Brown, Joel Gershon, and Pamela Thomasson (Senior Reviewers), and Marjorie Glass, Brian Harrison, Douglas W, Horner, Corolyn Huesman, Dan Laxton, Vivian Laxton, and Josh Sinton (Reviewers). McGraw-Hill. ISBN 0-07-912052-0. 

External links[edit]