We quietly released a test version of The Love Book app at the end of August.
The App went viral and these are the download stats for the iPhone App store, Books section:
NUMBER 1 Top Paid App: UK, Ireland, Australia, New Zealand and Canada
NUMBER 2 Top Paid App: USA
NUMBER 3 Top Paid App: China
From William Shakespeare to Richard Curtis, Alfred Lord Tennyson to Bob Dylan, here is love in all its many glorious and unpredictable forms. Whether passionate or platonic, parental or full of pain, tragic or funny, thwarted or blossoming, The Love Book is for all those who have ever experienced love for another human being.
Featuring readings by Emma Watson, Helena Bonham Carter, Tom Hiddleston, Damian Lewis, Gina Bellman and Helen McCrory of great literature, both familiar and lesser-known, the app allows users to make and share recordings of their favourite works – a truly interactive reading experience.
Illustrated by acclaimed graphic artist Kate Moross.
10% of profits will go to the charity Save the Children, who help and support families all over the world.
The Love Book app is available now, worldwide through your App Store. £1.99.
Helena Bonham Carter
Helena Bonham Carter has become a household name after starring in an extraordinary number of hit movies. She recently won the BAFTA for ‘Best Supporting Actress’ for her portrayal of the Queen Mother in The King’s Speech (2010), and is a two-time Academy Award Nominee. She has been featured in cult classics including Fight Club (1999), A Room with a View (1985), and the recent box-office blowout Les Misérables (2012). Her other film-roles have included Bellatrix Lestrange in the hugely popular Harry Potter franchise, the Red Queen in Alice in Wonderland (2010), and Mrs Lovett in Sweeney Todd: The Demon Barber of Fleet Street (2007). In 2012, she was awarded a CBE for services to drama. In October 2015 she will appear alongside Carey Mulligan and Meryl Streep in the much-anticipated movie, Suffragette. And in 2016, she will reprise her role as The Red Queen in Alice Through The Looking Glass, opposite Johnny Depp, Anne Hathaway, Mia Wasikowska and Sacha Baron-Cohen.
Emma Watson launched her career as a young actress playing Hermione Granger in the Harry Potter movies. She has since proved herself further by choosing eclectic roles in films such as The Perks of Being a Wallflower (2012), The Bling Ring (2013) and Noah (2014). Coming up next Emma will be on the big screen in Colonia, Regression and Beauty and The Beast. Emma discovered The Love Book app and tweeted us saying “@Allie Esiri so unbelievably obsessed with the lovebook app!such a lovely thing,thank you for putting this out into the world.#poetrylives” Soon after we had a call asking if Emma could come in to read on The Love Book app. So Emma can in to record in November. She read wonderful poems and prose from Shakespeare’s Juliet to her own favourite Rumi. We have more of all the actors’ audio which will be released soon.
Tom Hiddleston is now best known for playing Loki in Marvel Studios’ blockbusters Thor (2011) and The Avengers (2012), the latter of which has become the third-highest-grossing movie of all time. He is set to reprise the role in the sequel to Thor, Thor: The Dark World. He also featured as F. Scott Fitzgerald in the Oscar and Golden Globe winning film Midnight in Paris (2011), directed by Woody Allen, and as Captain Nicholls in the Academy, Golden Globe and Bafta Award nominated film War Horse (2011), directed by Steven Spielberg. Before his big-screen appearances, he met with great success as a stage-actor, winning an Olivier Award for his starring role in Cheek by Jowl’s production of Cymbeline (2007). Coming soon, with much talk of his great performance, Tom plays Hank Williams in the biopic, I Saw The Light. When asked why he wanted to read on The Love Book app, Tom answered, “because I love poetry, and I love poetry about love…all of the trimmings have been stripped away, and really great poets have got to the heart of the matter by using very, very few, brilliant words, to make you feel something, which, for most people, is inexpressible.”
Damian Lewis has met with enormous success for his Emmy and Golden Globe winning performance as Sergeant Nicholas Brody in the TV show Homeland. Before his starring role in Homeland, he received rave reviews for his part in Steven Spielberg’s Band of Brothers (2001), which was awarded the Golden Globe for ‘Best Miniseries or Motion Picture Made for Television’. He has performed at The National Theatre and with the Royal Shakespeare Company, and in 2005 he received critical acclaim for his portrayal of Benedict in the BBC’s modern adaptation of Much Ado About Nothing (2005), written by David Nicholls. Damian (and his wife) Helen McCrory (below) did a two-person show, with readings from The Love Book, at The Cheltenham Literature Festival, to a packed house of 2000 fans who laughed, cried and fell a little bit more in love with them both and the brilliance of great verse.
Helen McCrory has acted in several of the most successful film franchises of the last decade, appearing in the enormously popular Harry Potter series Narcissa Malfoy, and in the most recent James Bond film, Skyfall (2012), directed by Sam Mendes. She also met with success for her portrayal of Cherie Blair in the Academy Award nominated film The Queen (2006). She began her acting career on the London stage, and was nominated for an Olivier Award for her portrayal of Rosalind in David Lan’s production of As You Like It (2006). She has just finished her acclaimed run as Medea at London’s National Theatre. When asked about her involvement in The Love Book App, she emphasized how ‘wonderful’ it was to hear poems spoken, and the need to encourage ‘anything that can promote the speaking of verse’.
Gina Bellman is perhaps best known for her role in the award-winning sitcom Coupling (2000 – 2004), written by Stephen Moffat, of Doctor Who and Sherlock fame, and her starring role in Blackeyes (1989). Most recently, she delivered an award-winning performance as Sophie Devereaux, opposite Timothy Hutton in the TNT television series Leverage (2008 – 2012). In 2007, she starred alongside James Nesbitt in Jekyll. When asked to discuss her involvement in The Love Book App, she commented on how the app was a ‘wonderful marriage’ of technology with ‘the intimate emotion you feel through poetry’.
Allie Esiri is the director of iLiterature Ltd, the creator of The Love Book app and the editor of the hardback anthology, The Love Book (published by Square Peg, Random House UK).
Previously, in 2011 Allie had the idea to make a poetry app, primarily aimed at getting tech-savvy kids to fall in love with the joy of poetry. Allie co-created the iF Poems app, which has 270 of the greatest poems in the English language and brilliant readings by the award-winning actors Helena Bonham Carter, Harry Enfield, Tom Hiddleston and Bill Nighy. It is available for the iPad as iF Poems: “http://itunes.apple.com/gb/app/if-poems/id474446630?mt=8”
iF Poems had the honour of being selected as one of Apple’s All Time Favourite Education Apps. It features in The Sunday Times best apps list, The Spectator’s top ten ibooks of the year and The Times splashed the app on their front page and asked us at iF Poems to choose the poems for two eight-page poetry pull outs. In October 2012 Allie co-edited the accompanying iF book, which is called “iF, A Treasury of Poems for Almost Every Possibility”, published by Canongate. Asked about iF Poems, Helena Bonham Carter said “It’s like chocolate for the soul”.
Allie has talked about poetry in The Sunday Times, been named ‘The Poetry Powerhouse’ by Tatler magazine, seen her apps and books recommended by publications as diverse as American Vogue and The Sun! She has been interviewed on BBC Radio 4’s Today programme. She has created and presented events at The Times/Sunday Times Cheltenham Literature Festival, The Soho Oldie Literary Festival and The Sunday Times/Wellington College Education Festival. In October 2014, Allie, who is on Cheltenham Literature Festival’s Advisory Board, invited Damian Lewis and Helen McCrory to read poems from Allie’s The Love Book at Cheltenham – they played to an audience of 1500, and it was as if nobody could quite believe the humour and power of great poetry.
Allie sits on UK’s Children Poetry Summit, The Times/Sunday Times Cheltenham Literature Festival Advisory Board, and she has been The Chair of Save the Children’s Secret Winter Gala since 2013.
Click here to see the acclaimed book: “iF, A Treasury of Poems for Almost Every Possibility”
See the links above for The Love Book app and the book.