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In Which the Busload of Books Tour Begins

In Which the Busload of Books Tour Begins

After twelve years of dreaming and three years of planning and and more than a thousand generous contributors chipping in to make it possible, we’re hitting the road today with 25,000 books to give away and 25,000 miles to drive. (There’s a symmetry to it.) We’ve...

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In Which We Set Out to Prove Wonder Really is Everywhere

In Which We Set Out to Prove Wonder Really is Everywhere

For the pre-K-1st graders we meet on the Tour, we’ll be giving away a copy of Everywhere, Wonder, our picture about the importance of noticing and appreciating the beautiful and interesting things to be found wherever we go. The point of our school presentation for...

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The Daily Minute: 5.6.22

The Daily Minute: 5.6.22

This is the Daily Minute for May 6, 2022. In which the students of Garnet Elementary are excellent painters and practically waterproof.

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In Which Robbi is Not Here But Also Not So Far Away

In Which Robbi is Not Here But Also Not So Far Away

Robbi is on sabbatical this week. Which mean's she's very busy eating dump cake, sleeping when she needs to, and furiously finishing the final illustrations for Cookie Chronicles 5. Planning the Tour has taken much more time and effort than we’d realized, and we’ve...

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The Busload of Books Tour is a year-long project to promote literacy and raise awareness of the challenges facing our nation’s public schools.

Author/illustrator duo Matthew Swanson and Robbi Behr (that’s us) and our four kids will spend the 2022-2023 school year traveling the country in a school bus/tiny home, visiting Title I schools in all 50 states (plus DC), and giving away 25,000 hardcover books to students and teachers from underserved communities.

As we travel, we will be blogging, vlogging and posting frequently to social media. All of our content will be appropriate for bringing families and students along on our ultimate road trip.

The latest on Instagram:

The Daily Minute: 6.18.24
In which Robbi takes an early-morning drive along the Turnagain Arm of Cook Inlet.
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The Daily Minute: 6.18.24
In which Robbi reports from a rainforest near Anchorage.
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And they’re off!
 
Robbi and the kids (the dogs) left home early afternoon yesterday. They flew to Seattle last night and caught an overnight flight to Anchorage, where they landed just after midnight Alaska time. To kill time during their 12-hour layover, they’re going to rent a car and drive down the Turnagain Arm to Portage. It’s a gorgeous stretch of road along the water.
 
Later today, they’ll catch a flight to King Salmon, a small tundra town which is the jumping-off point for many sport fishing adventures—and the place where the fishermen in our district catch the bush planes that take them to their various fishing camps.  
 
The whole trip will take about 36 hours, at which point Robbi and the kids will land on the beach and be greeted by Robbi’s brother in a pickup truck. They’ll drive to our compound, take the plywood off the windows, head to the spring to get water, hook up the solar panel, and then start setting up our fishing lines.
 
It’s so much work to get started every year, but they’ll be up and running by the time I reach the tundra late next Monday evening. It’s possible I’ll jump off the plane and straight into my waders. Once the fishing starts, it waits for no one.
 
PS - This illustration is from our picture book Sunrise Summer, which tells the story of Alden’s first season as a member of the fishing crew. It’s a great way to get a glimpse into our lives in Alaska.
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The Daily Minute: 6.17.24
In which we tape up the coolers, and Robbi’s hair proves tundra-ready.
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Whoever you are, take your seat on the bus!

Our adventure is your adventure. Our country is your country, too. Follow along with us!