CHOCOLATE ATTACK! by Crystal Mack

CHOCOLATE ATTACK!

Age Range: 4 - 8
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Available on the App Store

KIRKUS REVIEW

Wavy-haired, stick-figured Missy doesn’t just love chocolate, she suffers from full-blown chocoholism. She eats enough to make herself grow wide as a football field and tall as a skyscraper. Until her mother teaches her moderation, Missy has hysterical chocolate meltdowns; readers with a sweet tooth will relate—even those too young to remember the heyday of the Big Mac Attack. Filled with clever animations and fuzzy, felt-like textures, the app is at times amusing: A small arrow points to a floating batch of bacon strips, an alternative to chocolate for breakfast; “Bacon shmakon,” tiny type reads. Unfortunately, the flights of fancy aren’t enough to make up for sloppy writing (rhyming “denying it” with “chocolate”) and an inconsistent message, especially in the era of a childhood-obesity epidemic. The app’s interface is as messy as the text. Interacting with each page’s objects (guiding an airplane, rolling Missy’s rounded body out the door) frequently causes inadvertent page turns. A drop-down menu is balky at best. “Attack!” is the first of an app series called Manic Freak Outs, but kids will freak out most over having to skip back and forth in the story from the app’s poor touch-screen controls. (iPad storybook app. 4-8)

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