Neil Humphreys' children's book tops global charts: 'I felt like Beyonce'
Who knew that The New Paper columnist Neil Humphreys and Beyonce would have something in common?
Yes, it's possible.
Just like the singing superstar did with her low-key release of her album in 2013, Humphreys released the most recent instalment of his children's series Abbie Rose and the Magic Suitcase without much fanfare on Apple's iBooks.
The book is a refreshing take on the story of the Great Race, which determined the order of the animals on the Chinese zodiac calendar. Abbie Rose travels to China to help the Goat reach the finish line.
And just like how Beyonce's self-titled album hit the top of the charts, Humphreys' I Really Rescued a Goat to Save Chinese New Year has been topping the iBooks charts for free children's books all over the world.
"I feel like Beyonce," said Humpheys cheekily.
His book has topped charts from China to Canada - and it has yet to show signs of slowing down.
In Canada, the book is the most downloaded book this week.
A check on the charts on Wednesday showed that his book is in second place. In first place? The free iPhone music guide.
It is his first time releasing a book without any fanfare and he is glad that it has worked out so well.
Humphreys, who had also recently released his adult fiction book Marina Bay Sins, said: "It's such an unexpected success. It's the fact that people would choose to download my book even though there is so many high quality free titles from authors like George Orwell and Jeffrey Archer."
Humphreys attributed his success to the interactive nature of the book, which was illustrated by Cheng Puay Koon.
It has moving, clickable elements that certainly makes the reading experience more exciting - especially for children.
Humphreys said: "The borderless media is crucial for authors especially in a small country like Singapore. We can be successful if we try to stay relevant and be open to exploring other opportunities.
"After all, we can't live in a vacuum."