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by Gwen Bullock & illustrated by Janelle Nevins & developed by NeeNee Holdings

Pub Date: May 17th, 2012
Publisher: NeeNee Holdings

An unfortunate mix of jarringly jumbled artwork, tepid text and general overstimulation, this visit to "Grandmama" feels at times like it will never end.

Attempts at whimsy in this celebration of the best place in the world—Grandmama's home—are forced to the point of causing eyestrain. Each page is a cluttered collection of photo-collaged images creating tableaux that are at times as nightmarish as they are imaginative. On one page, colorful birds fly around a rock sculpture in a Technicolor desert where Grandmama lives, while a kangaroo pushes a stroller and a child appears to be fleeing in terror. The most interesting visual effect is that the surface of the busy collages can be moved with the finger to create a tilting 3-D effect, making all the people, animals and objects on the screen appear to exist on multiple planes. But the "wow" factor of that admittedly neat feature subsides as it's paired with such lackluster couplets as, "We paint pictures and then later / Hang them on her fridgerator." The text is tiny (even when set at the largest font size available) and appears in a giant, ugly white strip along the bottom of every page. Though one little boy narrates the story throughout, the photos of people appear to be of different families and different Grandmamas, adding to the garish chaos. 

Some kids may enjoy the mishmash of loud photos and unremarkable storytelling, but parents will want to sidestep this unpleasant app.

(iPad storybook app. 3-7)