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Seton Hill Alumna's Gorgeous New Storybook A Crocheted Creature Adventure

Jennifer Olivarez author photo.The Big Acorn Race follows three squirrels, Hodge, Podge and Eric, as they race to be the first to get an acorn out of a tree - without climbing it. Instead, each must use wit and imagination to get to the prize. This 76-page full color book is, according to author Jennifer Olivarez, "part whimsical storybook and crochet pattern book in one." Jennifer, a Seton Hill graduate with a degree in creative writing and a minor in art, wrote "The Big Acorn Race" and created all of the crocheted creatures and their woodland settings. (It took her more than 950 hours to develop the patterns and complete the crochet work.)  The book includes more than 15 crochet patterns and projects to make the squirrels and their inventions, as well as accessories for readers inspired by the story.

"My time at Seton Hill showed me how important it is for women to empower each other," Jennifer says. "I hope 'The Big Acorn Race' speaks to a new generation of girls and women and reminds them to reach beyond stereotypes, believe in themselves, and never give up."

"I was impressed by all the neat effort she put into the art, which involves crocheting and photographing the setting and characters," says Professor of English Mike Arnzen, Ph.D.  "That's transmedia creativity at work -- a perfect blend of her major and minor -- and from all appearances, she's done a high quality job of it."

"It has been a lifelong dream of mine to publish a book," Jennifer says. "It was the experience of a lifetime and I learned so much."

Visit www.BigAcornRace.com to learn more about the book and read behind-the-scenes posts that follow Jennifer's yearlong journey from concept to publication. For more about the blog that inspired it all, visit www.SquirrelPicnic.com.

"My time at Seton Hill showed me how important it is for women to empower each other," Jennifer says. "I hope 'The Big Acorn Race' speaks to a new generation of girls and women and reminds them to reach beyond stereotypes, believe in themselves, and never give up."

Author photo by Shannon Reed