3.30.2017

Spotlight: Oh, The Things We Believed! (Annabelle & Aiden) by J.R. Becker

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Book Description:
In this delightful illustrated book written in rhyme, the children gaze at a face-shaped cloud. Aiden asks if it is real: "I sense it really sees me. Who knows what it can do! Maybe it has magic powers that make the sky so blue!" To answer, we introduce our favorite feathered-dinosaur, the Skeptisaurus, who guides the children to use their critical thinking skills when determining myth from fact. He takes the kids on an amazing journey through legends of old times, from witches to oracles, explaining how we evolved to see things that aren't always there. But when those myths vanish, they see that real scientific discovery is just as exciting, if not more. With his help, the kids learn that "real answers may not be magic, but they are always magical." This book raised over $11,000 in pre-orders on Kickstarter.


Annabelle and Aiden
stared up at a cloud.
When something it did  
made them gasp out loud.

It swirled into
the strangest shape.
A nose! A face!
They had to gape.

“I sense it really sees me.
Who knows what it can do?
Maybe it has magic powers
that make the sky so blue.”   

“Maybe yes, maybe no,” said
a rainbow-feathered snout.
“I’m Skeptisaurus the dinosaur.
It seems like you’re in doubt.”

“Before accepting your guess
just based on how you feel,
Let’s admit we just don’t know,
and discover if it’s real.”

“But discovery takes work and time!
Why search, when we just could
accept the answers we made up
like feelings say we should?”

“Feelings are important;
they add beauty to our life.
But for telling us what’s real outside,
they can cause lots of strife.”

“Why would they trick us?”
I thought you might ask.
Cuz we got them from people
from our long ago past.

People that survived
by running from a bear.
Or any sort of sound or threat
that often wasn’t there.

That’s why we think monsters
are the sounds under our beds.
And make up our own authors
for the voices in our heads.

We’re wired to see patterns
like pictures in grilled cheese.
On Mars, in stars, in cliffsides -- Oh,
the things we once believed!

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J. R. holds a B.A. in Philosophy and a Juris Doctorate from Emory University School of Law.  When he's not practicing entertainment law, playing drums, or enjoying the great outdoors, Joseph enjoys all the science and philosophy books and podcasts he can, pondering the bigger questions and dreaming up ideas for future children stories.

After publishing his first (philosophical, dystopian) novel The Spider & the Ant, and later becoming a father, Joseph was inspired to found the Annabelle & Aiden series to foster curiosity and scientific awareness in the next generation.

Joseph lives in New Jersey with his wife Leah, and two children, Annabelle & Aiden.
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