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HAROLD AT THE NORTH POLE by Crockett Johnson


by Crockett Johnson & illustrated by Crockett Johnson & developed by Trilogy Studios

Age Range: 2 - 6

Pub Date: Nov. 29th, 2011
Publisher: Trilogy Studios

Harold and his magic purple crayon rescue Santa (and thus Christmas) from the grip of a Christmas Eve blizzard.

An innovative problem solver, Harold is never at a loss when he encounters seemingly insurmountable obstacles; his purple crayon can draw virtually anything he needs. In this holiday tale, Harold travels to the North Pole, where he effectively takes the reins and whips Santa and his reindeer into blizzard-flying shape so they can make their all-important Christmas deliveries. Much like the first Harold app, this episode is light on graphics, providing an effective backdrop upon which the protagonist can sketch the story. In “Touch Tale” mode, Harold draws piecemeal gray illustrations; when finger-painted, they magically turn purple and the story progresses. Tapping objects prompts their both their verbal identification (including the name of all eight of Santa’s reindeer) and a tidy script sample that cascades in and subsequently disappears. Readers can create a blizzard by blowing into the iPad’s microphone, and icicles can be swept off the roof with a swipe. If there’s ever a question about what to do next, pat the question mark in the upper-right-hand corner, and a little blue finger will appear and offer clues. “Read to me” mode disables all interactive elements, but page turns are still required.

A refreshingly simple and entertaining winter playground for busy fingers. (iPad storybook app. 2-6)