Children’s book written by Central Texas mom hits Amazon best seller lists
LORENA, Texas (KWTX) - A book authored by Lorena mom Stephanie Wolfe, which was inspired by her daughter with special needs, already appears on Amazon best seller lists with the likes of Dr. Seuss and “The One and Only Ivan.”
‘Authentically Addie,’ which follows the journey of a young girl in a wheelchair as she visits a rehab zoo, was inspired by the life of 6-year-old Addie Wolfe, who was born with significant chromosomal abnormalities, and lives life to the fullest in a wheelchair.
It’s the first book Stephanie, has written, and it debuted to stunning numbers Wednesday.
The book hit No. 1 in two of Amazon’s new releases categories, Children’s Books on Disability and Children’s Zoo Books.
By Thursday it was also No. 2 in the overall bestseller list in Children’s Books on Disabilities as well as #10 in paperback for Children’s Zoo Books, ranked with the likes of Dr. Seuss and ‘The One and Only Ivan.’
“The response to ‘Authentically Addie’ was incredible,” Stephanie said.
“We had so many messages yesterday and reviews of people just saying how much they love the book already, how their children could relate to it and how they felt their children were represented within this book.”
The main character, Addie, helps teach readers about the zoo animals with different disabilities including a monkey with a prosthetic arm and a penguin with autism.
Other animals have heart defects or feeding tubes.
Stephanie said she started on the book just as the COVID-19 pandemic hit in spring 2020, which gave her plenty of time at home to do the proper research.
She said she wanted to make sure all disabilities were properly represented, and many times leaned on life experiences from her group at No Limitations, a local nonprofit that gives special needs kids an outlet for activities like sports and Girl Scouts.
“I had to do a lot of research,” Stephanie said.
“There was a lot of speaking to people that had these disabilities and making sure we represented them the way we should.”
The book was illustrated by Jordan-based illustrator Noor Alshalabi and is, not coincidentally, full of bright and happy colors.
“Addie and I love bright colors,” Stephanie said.
“It had to be bright it had to be happy it had to be fun.”
Stephanie said Addie had an active role in the making of the book and celebrated its launch Wednesday with balloons and cake from her dad.
The entire family is celebrating the embrace readers are showing for those with special needs by purchasing the book.
“We love seeing people of all kinds represented in literature and it needs to be more in the forefront than what it is,” Stephanie said. “So I am so happy that this book is filling that void.”
Authentically Addie is available for purchase on Amazon.
A book signing is planned for March 27 at the Fabled Bookshop & Cafe in downtown Waco.
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