Screen shot 2010-07-19 at 8.35.41 AM.pngHere’s an interesting new company. A Story Before Bed has 125 children’s books that one can record and then the books can be viewed and the child can hear them read in the reader’s voice. This would be neat for kids who have a parent who travels, or for grandparents, or for members of the armed forces.

The parent, grandparent, etc. appears in a small window on the upper right hand side of the book. Flash is required, as is a computer with a webcam so the audio/video can be recorded. They have a demo on the site of how this works. Books are $6.99 and there are free coupon codes for members of the armed forces.

This is one example, though, of how a bad website may restrict what seems to be a good idea. There is no clear explanation of how this all works up front and even the price is hidden in a FAQ. You really have to poke around to find out what is going on. I wonder how many people get turned off and confused before they really get started. Even someone like me found the site confusing. Plough through it anyway, it could bring a huge smile to a kid’s face!


  1. Thanks so much for taking the time to look at A Story Before Bed. We’re sorry you found it a bit confusing, and we really appreciate the feedback.

    As for pricing, Most of our books are $6.99 with a few priced at $9.99. You can tell the free books cause they have a “free” ribbon on them in the bookstore. And the other books’ pricing is available when you hover over each book (along with a short synopsis, and other details). But it’s important to note that:

    a) we have two free books available right now – Itsy Bitsy Spider and Jabberwocky, and we’ll be adding more freebies over time. This will let you try the site with no risk at all. And,
    b) you can record any book on our site, even the ones we charge for, and not pay until you’re happy with your recording. Again, we believe this makes our site relatively risk free to try.

    That said, clearly we need to do better in explaining how things work, and we really appreciate your comments and blog post. Don’t hesitate to let us know if you have any other questions or comments.

  2. The Elizabeth Fry Society of Saint John New Brunswick is a non profit registered Canadian Charity that connects moms in prison with their children via storybooks. Our method is to go directly to the prisons and provide a tape recorder where the mom can choose a storybook and read this on tape to her child and then we send via mail the storybook and the tape to the child who can folow along with mom. It certainly maintains a contact with families. As our method is becoming obsolete we are looking for donations of recordable books to use in this program. Would you be able to help us Your recordable books would be perfect.. We have no funding and rely on donations form people who believe in what we do.If you could help it would be greatly appreciated. For further information contact Marianna Stack 506-635-8851 or via E-Mail

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