As a kid, Martellus Bennett wanted to be lots of things: an astronaut, a Chocolate Store Owner (Like Willy Wonka) or a professional athlete. Now Bennett is a tight end for the New England Patriots, but when his new book debuts on Father’s Day he will also be a published author. I interviewed Bennett about his life and his new book, Hey AJ it’s Saturday, which will be released on Father’s Day.
The book is about a girl named AJ, who is based on Bennett's daughter, Jett. AJ wakes up on a Saturday morning and wants breakfast, but her parents want to sleep in. She decides to make her own breakfast but figures out that the kitchen can be a weird place.
Bennett, whose mom was a teacher, has always loved reading and writing. When he was young he looked up to Roald Dahl, the author of James and the Giant Peach and Charlie and the Chocolate Factory. Bennett was inspired to make the world happy with his writing because he loved how Willy Wonka made chocolate and candy to make the world happy.
Bennett wanted to share his stories with the world and wanted to share AJ’s story first. Completing the ideas of the book and writing for the first time made a lot of it pretty challenging, but Bennett loved the way so many people came together during the writing process – he even had friends from the United Kingdom help him.
The book comes with an app that Bennett and AJ helped design. In order to play the interactive game on the app, you must first read the book. The app allows you to help walk AJ through the story. Within the app there are about 160 things that you can move and learn about. Bennett and AJ narrate the app, and there is music. AJ was the first person to use the app, providing feedback about which pages she did or didn’t like and what was useful and helpful.
Bennett will be coming out with two new books: Hey AJ It’s Bedtime and Hey AJ It’s Bath Time. He will also have Hey AJ t-shirts, bookmarks, backpacks, shoes, and much more.
Bennett, who was traded from the Chicago Bears to the Patriots this offseason, is excited about his new book and also happy to be on the Patriots. The eight-year veteran gets to play against his brother, Michael Bennett, in prime time when the Pats play the Seahawks. He also said that his new teammates are making him a better player.
Bennett is looking forward to scoring touchdowns this season. His dream celebration is a space ship picking him up from the end zone and taking him back to the sideline. He would call it the Space Jam.
Photos: Todd Rosenberg (Bennett); Courtesy of Martellus Bennett (Hey AJ)