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THIS IS MY STORY ... AND I'M STICKING TO IT by Gramercy Consultants

THIS IS MY STORY ... AND I'M STICKING TO IT

By Gramercy Consultants

Age Range: 3 - 6

Pub Date: May 3rd, 2011
Publisher: Callaway Digital Arts

A kind of visual Mad Libs app, this one doesn't have a narrative or even consistent characters. But its very simple design and easy-to-grasp (both literally and figuratively) stickers make it fun nevertheless.

A title screen that has a hand-drawn look offers the options of "Make Up Your Own Story," "Match a Sticker Story," "Sticker Page Fun" and "Read a Saved Story" as big, box icons. The first option offers a scrolling rail at the bottom of the screen with 30 items ranging from "The Cupcake" to "The Kite" to "The Pig." Selecting an object's icon and sliding it into a blank, transparent box places it in a fill-in-the-blank story page (for instance, "The Spider said hello to The Flower"). This setup continues for eight pages, and then the story can be played back with narration or saved to be read again later. The "Match" game offers outlines of the objects, leaving the reader to scroll through the animals, clothes and other items to fill in the right shape. And "Sticker Page Fun" is a set of backgrounds on which to place stickers in a more free-form way. The rigid structure of the "Make Up" section doesn't exactly feel like it'll make anyone's imagination gallop at full pace, but the app is solidly built, supremely easy to navigate and filled with charmingly low-fi (but still effective) art. It's a shame there aren't more options available—to customize the story skeleton, record a reader's voice or even color the sticker pages, for instance.

While it could have been stronger with a few more surprises and features, the app's simplicity and novelty are nearly enough to make up for that. (iPad storybook app. 3-6)