A self-important witch who haunts a small village gets her comeuppance—and her revenge, too.
Naailde is a scrofulous, mischievous character of international repute in the world of witches—she can transform into 1,897 different hideous monsters—who lives in a mansion infested with all manner of infernal creatures, “in a dark and horrifying forest.” An elegant gentleman comes knocking at her door one eve and asks to spend the night—a red flag Naailde misses in her eagerness to scare his pants off. All to no avail; the dandy will have none of her most wily and gruesome guises. He even criticizes her technique. What’s more, he—now revealed as “a” devil—sends her packing...until she returns as a she-devil, though she’ll always be Naailde underneath. This app is long enough to provide a wealth of textual and visual narration, giving it unusual depth. The text is narrated by a voice that verges on the eerie, and the lightly animated, sketchlike artwork is an artful mare’s nest of black linework, though red and purple color starts to leak in with the arrival of the guest. The story comes to an ambiguous close, leaving readers to wonder if the red and purple ribbons of smoke coming from the chimney are a sign of togetherness or immolation.
A healthy spoonful of creepiness softened by the charming weakness of the characters. (Requires iOS 6 and above.) (iPad storybook app. 4-8)