The fall is rapidly turning into Rock Star Children’s Book season for the holidays. Bruce Springsteen has become the second Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Member-turned-co-author of a youth-oriented book in recent months with the reveal of a forthcoming kids’ book based on his song “Outlaw Pete.”
The Springsteen news follows the announcement in March about “Gus and Me,” a children’s book coming Sept. 9 from Rolling Stones songwriter and guitarist Keith Richards in collaboration with his daughter, illustrator Theodora Richards.
“Outlaw Pete,” which the Boss has created with cartoonist and writer Frank Caruso, will be published on Nov. 4 by Simon & Schuster, and is drawn from the epic 8-minute song from Springsteen’s 2009 album “Working on a Dream.”
The book represents a full-circle turn in a way for his song, which he said in a statement was inspired by a 1950 children’s book titled “Brave Cowboy Bill” that his mother used to read to him.
“Outlaw Pete is essentially the story of a man trying to outlive and outrun his sins,” Springsteen noted.
The song and the story struck Caruso, who created illustrations to accompany Springsteen’s lyrics.
“When Bruce wrote ‘Outlaw Pete’ he didn’t just write a great song, he created a great character,” Caruso said in the same statement. “The first time I heard the song this book played out in my head. Like Tom Sawyer, Huck Finn, Dorothy Gale and for me, even Popeye, Outlaw Pete cuts deep into the folklore of our country and weaves its way into the fabric of great American literary characters.”
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