Potter’s tale of a hapless frog who sets out to catch a minnow for dinner and almost ends up being dinner himself gets several useful extras in this unabridged app. It also receives a design upgrade that increases the original’s cramped trim size and eliminates its blank pages while pairing text and pictures more closely together.
There are three reading options: silent; read aloud in a pleasantly measured and low-key way by a female narrator with a British accent; and, through an online connection, a mode that allows an absent parent or other reader to be the voice and to turn the pages remotely. This last option even includes a button that enables two-way conversations. The illustrations are sharply detailed, clear of hue and expandable with a touch to full-screen size. There is little animation (a dragonfly here, a water bug there), but touching some figures produces an audio tag. A coloring book and connect-the-dots activity complement the story. A retractable navigation bar at the bottom provides thumbnail images of each page of the tale for easy skipping around, plus a button to open the table of contents. The remote Buddy mode requires a relatively involved prior setup, but it should prove a boon to families with absent parents.
High production values and a story-centered design give this a leg up over flashier, more game-like e-books. (iPad storybook app. 4-8)