Wednesday, December 11, 2019

Holiday Gift Guide 2019: Mister Rogers' Neighborhood: A Visual History

*This is a sponsored review. All opinions are 100% mine.

Mister Rogers' Neighborhood: A Visual History
by Melissa Wagner, Tim Lybarger, and Jenna McGuiggan

Go behind the scenes of Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood with this unprecedented dive into its storied history. More than fifty years ago, Fred Rogers, a modest television host, revolutionized children’s entertainment with a simple set design, quiet dialogue, and a few hand puppets playing out everyday situations. The effect was extraordinary: Mister Rogers created a relationship with millions of young viewers, each of whom felt as if they were visiting with a trusted friend. His radical kindness, acceptance, and empathy created a sacred place where everyone felt safe and valued.

Featuring exclusive photographs; a guide to the characters, puppets, and episodes; original interviews; and rare ephemera, Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood: A Visual History reveals how the show came together to have a deep impact on American culture. Discover wonderful anecdotes from Yo-Yo Ma and Wynton Marsalis as well as the actors, directors, art designers, producers, studio musicians, and more who devoted their careers to working with Fred. Chronicling the show's complete timeline—from its humble beginnings on WQED in Pittsburgh to its commemoration on the big screen in the feature film A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood, starring Tom Hanks, based on a screenplay written by Micah Fitzerman-Blue and Noah Harpster and directed by Marielle Heller—this incredibly comprehensive book celebrates both Fred Rogers and the wonderful legacy of Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood.

Where To Purchase?

Like many other people, I grew up watching Mister Rogers' Neighborhood on PBS. It was clean-cut series with morals and life lessons for young viewers. Plus, there were puppets! Everyone loves puppets, right?

Thanks to last year's documentary "Won't You Be My Neighbor?" and this year's feature film "A Beautiful Neighborhood" starring Tom Hanks, the late Fred Rogers has been getting a lot attention in the media. Clarkson Potter (The Crown Publishing Company) recently published Mister Rogers' Neighborhood: A Visual History, a massive 336-page behind-the-scenes book with a forward by Tom Hanks.

The book is split up into six chapters:
  • Our Teachers Neighborhood: Fred Rogers and the Beginnings of the Neighborhood 
  • Hi, Neighbor!: Our Television Visits with Mister Rogers
  • A Place Where Anything Can Happen: The Neighborhood of Make-Believe
  • The Place Behind the Neighborhood: A Tour of Studio A
  • That's What I Sing About: The Music and Its Message
  • It's Such a Good Feeling: The Legacy of Fred Rogers

Overall, Mister Rogers' Neighborhood: A Visual History is well-written with plenty of behind-the-scenes photos and B&W and color photos from the series. The book is a must-have for any Mister Rogers' Neighborhood fan or for anyone who loves to read about television history.

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