Samantha Newark, the original speaking voice of Jem from the beloved 1980s cartoon series Jem and the Holograms, is lending her voice to raise awareness of a new LGBT-themed children’s book that teaches acceptance.
The actor and recording artist has recorded an audio book to support the Kickstarter campaign for Square Zair Pair, a story set in the magical land of Hanamandoo, occupied by creatures called Zairs. Zairs do everything in pairs — one round and one square. But one day two square Zairs pair for the first time, and their fellow Zairs reject them — until they learn a lesson of acceptance and strength in diversity.
Kickstarter campaign for the book, written by Jase Peeples (who happens to be The Advocate’s entertainment editor) and illustrated by former Disney artist Christine Knopp, was launched today and seeks to raise $10,000 in the next month to cover costs of illustration, printing, and shipping for the book’s initial print run. Publication is expected by September.
The audio book by Newark is offered as one of several rewards available to those who back the project.
“The story came to me years ago, after a friend told me he and his husband were having trouble finding many children’s picture books with positive LGBT themes they could share with their daughter,” Peeples says. “I wanted to help by creating a new, unique tale for families that might be looking for just such stories, and so I sat down to write Square Zair Pair.”
Watch the campaign video below and lend your support at the project’s Kickstarter page.