Kirkus Reviews QR Code


Pop-Up Adventure

developed by Coleco

Age Range: 4 - 6

Pub Date: Dec. 16th, 2010
Publisher: Coleco

Coleco presents its first app, a 15-page cartoon pop-up retelling of the familiar tale. Mama Pig sends her children off, stiffly advising them to “be the best that you can be since that is a great way to get along in the world.” Following the well-established narrative, the younger brothers expend little effort in construction, while the eldest exchanges his labor for a lesson in brick-making—and proves the smartest. Animated (read-aloud) mode is automatic, and subtitles are on by default, with spoken words highlighted. Interactive mode (sans text) follows, though modes can be switched (laboriously) by a fast-forward/replay button on the screen’s lower edge, along with buttons for help and main menu (start/continue, help, subtitles on/off). Music with a classical flair plays continuously. The app begins and ends with a gilt-lettered book on a table, and each page turn reinforces the 3-D illusion, as one pop-up tableau collapses to be replaced by the next. Animation consists of pop-up and sound effects: Cut-out figures sway, float across the screen or disappear downward and pop back up. Think stick puppets. Readers are even invited to blow the house down (like the wolf). The trick is to blow across the microphone of the device (it pays to read page two of Help). This reinvention will engage some readers, but it probably won't blow them away. (iPad storybook app. 4-6)