McSweeney’s is turning little book lovers into book writers too

McMullens BundleAfter our local Border’s bookstore closed, I became a bit “woe is me” about the future of books. I’m one of those people who just can’t imagine sitting down my kids for a bedtime story with my iPad in my lap.

So, I’m rejoicing over this excellent “read it and then create your own” book bundle from Dave Egger’s own McSweeney’s Books, which is doing its part to keep the genre vibrant, exciting and, most importantly to me, paper.

The McMullens Bundle includes three beautifully illustrated hardcover picture books, as well as The Author-Illustrator Starter Kit of blank books. Let’s just say it’s the perfect combo; my kids can’t wait to create their own books, especially after being inspired by the three in this set.

We Need a Horse and Symphony City are both new titles with illustrations that will have you looking at the pictures long after the words are read. I especially love the modern look of author/illustrator Amy Martin’s Symphony City. The humorous third title, Here Comes the Cat!, was written in ’86 as a collaboration between an American designer and Russian painter. I think it’s fabulous that the simple repetitive text is written in both English and Russian and that the little mouse realizes that the “big bad” cat is actually a pretty good friend—perhaps a subtle anti-Cold War message?

A nice touch: all three books are covered in a heavyweight paper jacket that unfolds into a poster
for your kid’s bedroom. Perfect for the little bibliophile who would rather
have their favorite story on the wall than a Dora poster.

Home run, McSweeney’s. We’ll expect kids books from Michael Chabon and David Foster Wallace in the next series. -Christina

Grab the The McMullens Bundle of books for children from The McSweeney Store.


Senior Associate Editor Christina Refford loves homeschooling, running, cool kids’ music, and coffee. Not in that order.


  • Reply September 19, 2011


    Is there anything the McSweeney’s folks can’t do? Especially awesome that you’re featuring this on Talk Like A Pirate Day.

  • Reply September 19, 2011

    Pregnancy Formula

    Really, you are so right about iPad! I cant imagine myself reading stories from it. I am a little afraid that my kids someday will read or maybe even not read stories for them children from some iPad similar stuff. And step by step books will disappear absolutely.
    All respect for McSweeney!

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