As part of the 50th anniversary celebrations for Don McLean‘s classic anthem “American Pie” this year, a children’s book inspired by the song and McLean’s early life will be published in September.

Titled American Pie: A Fable, the book was co-written by the singer/songwriter and author and publisher Judith A. Proffer. Weaving themes from “American Pie” together with some of Don’s own childhood experiences, the book tells the story of a lonely newspaper boy in the late 1950s who finds happiness while discovering the joy of friendship and music.

The 48-page book, which contains 40 illustrations by artist Yoko Matsuoka, can be pre-ordered now at various online retailers. It’s priced at $19.95.

“I am really excited to see the reaction from people about this book,” says McLean. “We have all read many children’s books to our kids and I am hoping this one stands up to the greatness of others we have put our kids to sleep with.”

“American Pie” was released in October 1971 along with McLean’s album of the same name. The single spent four weeks at #1 on the Billboard Hot 100 in early ’72.

Using the tragic 1959 plane crash that killed Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens and The Big Bopper — “The Day the Music Died” — as its launching point, the epic eight-and-a-half-minute tune featured allegorical imagery that appears to chronicle key historic and cultural events of the late ’50s and the 1960s.

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