Sault Ste. Marie, Ont.-based writer Erin Hern­den (left) recorded her first au­dio­book, in Prince Al­bert five years ago. It is now avail­able on her web­site. Her hus­band Don (right) pro­vided il­lus­tra­tions.

Prince Albert Daily Herald - - CLASSIFIEDS -

most au­dio sto­ries don’t have sound ef­fects … be­cause it can be dis­tract­ing. But this is unique in that the sound ef­fects don’t in­ter­fere with the story; they just em­pha­size the qual­i­ties of the mice.”

The book tells the story of two mice sib­lings, El­lie and Sam­mie, who go on a mu­si­cal jour­ney through North­ern On­tario and learn a few things about each other along the way. El­lie be­comes more con­fi­dent and dis­cov­ers her singing voice while Sam­mie learns the piano.

“My un­der­ly­ing theme (is) that chil­dren have all kinds of qual­i­ties that you have to en­cour­age,” Hern­den ex­plained.

Hern­den’s daugh­ter Kath­leen Radke, a so­prano, pro­vides El­lie’s “lit­tle opera voice” and her nephew Michael Con­nell plays Sam­mie’s piano ac­com­pa­ni­ment and ad­di­tional sound ef­fects. Hern­den said Radke and Con­nell have been per­form­ing to­gether since they were chil­dren in the cathe­dral choir. Their por­tions were recorded in Sault Ste. Marie and sent to McFar­lane to as­sem­ble back in P.A.

The record­ing was com­pleted in 2012 and Hern­den spent the en­sur­ing years mak­ing printed book avail­able on ama­ and de­vel­op­ing her own web­site, weewide­, where the au­dio­book is now avail­able. She said the record­ing part was easy, but mak­ing it avail­able was more chal­leng­ing.

She said work­ing with fam­ily mem­bers was an en­joy­able ex­pe­ri­ence.

“Richard, Kate and Mike, they’re very con­sum­mate pro­fes­sional mu­si­cians and per­form­ers and they just have a great ease,” Hern­den said.

“They have to put up with my ideas and it’s very hard to do, il­lus­trate some­one else’s ideas, but they cap­tured it all per­fectly for me so I’ll al­ways ap­pre­ci­ate that.”

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