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All children should get to see themselves as the hero. The Forgotten Forest is our first amazing personalised picture book!
All children should get to see themselves as the hero. The Forgotten Forest is our first amazing personalised picture book!
All children should get to see themselves as the hero. The Forgotten Forest is our first amazing personalised picture book!
178 backers pledged £4,543 to help bring this project to life.

About

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A diverse and inclusive personalised picture book

£4,543

178

Only your child can find the key to spring and release the forest from its perpetual winter. 

Across 30 beautifully illustrated pages, each personalised with their likeness, name, birthday and other details, they must solve the clues along the way to bring light, love and laughter back to the forest.

Diverse and Inclusive 

Producing diverse and inclusive personalised picture books is so important to us at Oh Zoe, and with your help we’re going to make a story which provides for the widest range of children in our society. 

For each book you can choose from a range of options to ensure your child can see themselves as the hero in the story, including:

  • 8 skin tones
  • 6 eye colours
  • 12 hair styles
  • 25 hair colours.

Additionally, we've made no assumptions about gender - picking 'girl' or 'boy' shouldn't limit your choices, so we don't even ask. Instead our approach is to offer a choice of pronouns beyond the limited 'she' or 'he' including 'they', 've', 'ne', 'ey' and 'ze'.

To see the reviews in full please click on any of the quotes below.

   

Over the last 18 months we’ve been working with the award winning author Victoria Richards and the amazing illustration team of Sas & Yosh to produce a visually stunning and engaging tale.

The Story

The Forgotten Forest is a magical, personalised story about a young child who goes on an adventure in a lonely, dark and unloved wood.

The frost spirit has cast a spell upon the forest, and the only way for the spell to be broken, and light, love and laughter to return to the forest, is for our hero to journey through the forest, solving personalised clues along the way.

The most suitable age range is 3-8, but everyone loves seeing themselves in the story, so don't let the age range hold you back!

Illustration details from The Forgotten Forest
Illustration details from The Forgotten Forest

Throughout The Forgotten Forest the story is interlaced with facts about the child such as:

  • their name
  • the town / city where they live
  • their favourite colour
  • the name of their road / street
  • the day and month of their birthday
  • the name of their favourite toy or a family member.

The Illustrations

Every page has been lovingly illustrated by our fantastic design duo, Sas & Yosh. With a strong Japanese influence, blending manga style and digital collage, the team has created a magical, ethereal world.

The illustrations are crammed full of detail, leaving you to discover new creatures and surprises on each reading.

Meeting the old oak
Meeting the old oak
Personalised with the child's town or city
Personalised with the child's town or city
The stream helping our hero find the next clue
The stream helping our hero find the next clue
Will the rock giant help us?
Will the rock giant help us?
The house of ice and stone
The house of ice and stone
Spring returns to the forest
Spring returns to the forest

Ordering

We've made ordering as simple as possible. At the end of the campaign you'll be sent an individual link for each book you've pledged for.

And if you're ordering the book as a gift but don't have all the info - don't worry, you'll be able to fill in what you know, save your progress and then ask the lucky recipient (or their grown up) to fill in the rest.

  • Get immediate access to the full book online to review
  • Get immediate access to your free personalised activity pack, including word search, colouring in pages, spot the difference and more
  • Participate in backer polls and help shape the project development.
  • 1 paperback copy, personalised just for you, plus:
  • The Squirrel package.

For each additional copy for a different child add £19 to your pledge

Free UK shipping, subsidised elsewhere

RRP: £25 plus shipping 

  • 1 hardback copy, personalised just for you, plus
  • The Squirrel package.

For each additional copy for a different child add £30 to your pledge

Free UK shipping, subsidised elsewhere

RRP: £40 plus shipping

  • 1 paperback copy for everyday use, plus:
  • 1 identical hardback copy as a keepsake, plus:
  • The Squirrel package.

For each additional set of copies for a different child add £35 to your pledge

Free UK shipping, subsidised elsewhere

RRP: £50 plus shipping

  • 1 hardback copy, personalised just for you, plus:
  • 1 fine art, giclée print of your favourite personalised spread for your child's bedroom. Size A3, plus:
  • The Squirrel package.

For each additional copy and print for a different child add £50 to your pledge

Free UK shipping, subsidised elsewhere

RRP: £65 plus shipping

  • Your child, drawn by our illustrators, and made a permanent feature character of the first spread for this and all future editions, plus:
  • 1 fine art giclée print of your favourite personalised spread, plus:
  • The Moon package, plus:
  • The Squirrel package.
Your child will feature in this page in every book
Your child will feature in this page in every book

Get rewarded for your hard work! Share this campaign with the link back.ohzoe.com and help us hit our stretch goals!

Bookmark the link, share it with your friends, add it to your signature.

If we hit £2,500 everyone pledging for Stream package and above will get a bonus bookmark.

Simply copy and paste back.ohzoe.com into emails, tweets, insta posts, and letters to your long lost cousin.

If we hit £3,500 everyone pledging for Stream package and above will receive an A7 sized page of stickers with characters from the book.

We'll also commission our artists to add 5 new hair styles based on the feedback from our backers.

At £5,000 we'll extend the personalisation to t-shirt colour and add a Kickstarter exclusive t-shirt style to the personalisation options for our wonderful backers.

Click to view at a higher resolution
Click to view at a higher resolution

Oh Zoe was born on a beach in Cornwall many summers ago.

After trying to write our own book - and failing miserably - we launched the Oh Zoe Rising Talent Award in January 2017 to find new picture book talent. 

From well over 500 entries we found our amazing winner, Victoria, and our first title, The Forgotten Forest.

After a lot of development, working closely with Sas & Yosh, The Forgotten Forest is now complete and ready to share with the world.

Why Kickstarter?

We've created a product that currently has over 150,000 combinations for the illustrated character - but we can do more

Working with our wonderful backers gives us a chance to find out what you want from this story, and gives us a chance to fulfil those desires before going to print.

This campaign is our chance to change the face of publishing; to show that we as a community want better representation in children's literature.

To paraphrase the Children's Laureate, Lauren Child, it’s important because if as a child you don’t see yourself in books, then how can you feel part of society?

What's more, academic research shows personalised picture books make you smile and laugh more than none personalised books!

"Statistical analyses revealed that children and parents showed significantly higher overall frequencies of smiles and laughs with the personalized books in comparison to the non-personalized books."

Parents reading with their toddlers: The role of personalization in book engagement. Kucirkova, Messer, Whitelock, 2012

Backing this project will give you two things:

  • you'll get an awesome book for your child where they can see themselves as the hero
  • you'll help us make that experience available to other children too.
Katharine, Matt, Victoria, and Sas & Yosh
Katharine, Matt, Victoria, and Sas & Yosh

Katharine

Katharine has a background in luxury brand marketing and experience in publishing. She grew up surrounded by books and inherited her parents' passion, studying English Literature at the University of Durham. She loves children's books and is passionate about building a product that lets children see themselves as the hero, no matter what their background.

Matt

Matt has a background in operations, knows enough code to be dangerous, and will happily give anything a try. He's developed the rendering engine and API to turn your personalisation choices into real books, and is generally happiest when given both a hard problem to solve, and time in which to solve it.

Victoria

Victoria is a freelance journalist, writer and poet. She has worked for BBC News, The Times and The Independent, has appeared on Newsnight, BBC World and ITV News and regularly writes for Independent Voices.

Sas & Yosh

Sarah (Sas) is a freelance and published illustrator, art lecturer, and compulsive children’s book collector, with an MA in Children’s book illustration. A lover of fine lines, pattern and colour, Sarah loves taking inspiration from different cultures and has a passion for Japanese art.

Yoshie (Yosh) is a freelance illustrator, published picture book author, colour and pattern addict, who has studied and worked in the fashion industry in Tokyo. Yoshie loves Manga style and collage of limitless materials.

Timeline

January 2017 - Oh Zoe launch the inaugural Rising Talent Award, receiving over 500 picture book entries for our new personalised picture book company

March 2017 - Victoria Richards is chosen as the winner, with her stunning title The Forgotten Forest 

April 2017 - Sas & Yosh start working on the artwork for The Forgotten Forest

March 2018 - The text and artwork are delivered; work is complete to allow personalisation through the website, and to finalise the paper stock and costs

August 2018 - A limited print run is complete to iron out problems in the end to end process and to deliver a small number of review copies ahead of Kickstarter 

28th August 2018 - The Kickstarter campaign is launched!

28th September 2018 - The Kickstarter campaign ends!

October 2018 - Each book is produced ready for print

November 2018 - Books and other artwork go to the printer for production

Late November 2018 - Printed books are quality assured before being distributed to backers.

For Press Releases and product images please see presspack.ohzoe.com

Risks and challenges

Having completed a print run for our initial promotional copies we are happy that both the production pipeline and printing process are OK and ready to go.

The cost of production may vary somewhat from our initial estimates if the paper or ink market should suddenly change, and while we are confident that our printer is in rude health you are always exposed somewhat when working with third parties.

We have not yet printed a hardback version of the book - and there may be some back and forth with the printer to iron out any production issues.

As each book created is unique, and because we need to fulfil the print in as few print runs as possible to keep costs down, we are somewhat at the mercy of slow responses from backers. To manage this we will have at least two deadlines - respond by the first and your book will be in the first shipment - but don't worry if you miss that, we'll do another print run at a later date to allow those who haven't been able to respond in time to get their info to us.

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Questions about this project? Check out the FAQ

Support

  1. Select this reward

    Pledge £1 or more About US$ 1.28

    Squirrel package

    Includes:
    • Immediate access to the full story online
    • Immediate access to the free personalised activity pack
    • Our eternal thanks!
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    13 backers
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  2. Reward no longer available

    Pledge £19 or more About $24

    Signed Stream package (save 24%)

    A personalised copy of The Forgotten Forest in paperback, signed by the author and illustrators.

    FREE UK SHIPPING

    RRP £25

    Includes:
    • 1 paperback copy, personalised, and signed
    • The Squirrel package
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    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    Reward no longer available 70 backers
    £
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  3. Select this reward

    Pledge £19 or more About $24

    Stream package (save 24%)

    A personalised copy of The Forgotten Forest in paperback.

    FREE UK SHIPPING

    RRP £25

    Includes:
    • 1 paperback copy, personalised
    • The Squirrel package
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    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    42 backers
    £
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  4. Select this reward

    Pledge £30 or more About $38

    Signed Rock Giant package (save 25%)

    A personalised copy of The Forgotten Forest in hardback, signed by the author and illustrators.

    FREE UK SHIPPING

    RRP £40

    Includes:
    • 1 hardback copy, personalised, and signed
    • The Squirrel package
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    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    Limited 21 backers
    £
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  5. Select this reward

    Pledge £30 or more About $38

    Rock Giant package (save 25%)

    A personalised copy of The Forgotten Forest in hardback.

    FREE UK SHIPPING

    RRP £40

    Includes:
    • 1 hardback copy, personalised
    • The Squirrel package
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    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    6 backers
    £
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  6. Select this reward

    Pledge £35 or more About $45

    Signed Moon package (save 30%)

    A personalised copy of The Forgotten Forest in both hardback (keepsake) and paperback (everyday use). Both signed by the author and illustrators.

    FREE UK SHIPPING

    RRP £50

    Includes:
    • 1 hardback copy, personalised, and signed
    • 1 paperback copy, personalised, and signed
    • The Squirrel package
    Less
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    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    Limited 11 backers
    £
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  7. Select this reward

    Pledge £35 or more About $45

    Moon package (save 30%)

    A personalised copy of The Forgotten Forest in both hardback (keepsake) and paperback (everyday use).

    FREE UK SHIPPING

    RRP £50

    Includes:
    • 1 hardback copy, personalised
    • 1 paperback copy, personalised
    • The Squirrel package
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    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    0 backers
    £
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  8. Select this reward

    Pledge £50 or more About $64

    Star package (save 23%)

    A personalised copy of The Forgotten Forest in hardback plus a fine art giclée print for your child's room.

    FREE UK SHIPPING

    RRP £65

    Includes:
    • Giclée print of favourite personalised spread
    • 1 hardback copy, personalised
    • The Squirrel package
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    5 backers
    £
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  9. Select this reward

    Pledge £500 or more About $641

    Old Oak package

    Feature in The Forgotten Forest forever.

    Includes:
    • Your child illustrated into page 1 for all books
    • Giclée print of spread 1 featuring your child
    • Giclée print of favourite personalised spread
    • The Moon package
    • The Squirrel package
    Less
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    Ships to Anywhere in the world
    Limited 0 backers
    £
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Funding period

- (31 days)