In Ink Robin’s retelling of the old chestnut, town mouse meets country mouse in the guise of city-dwelling Gordon the rabbit and his country cousin, Fox.
In what could be a 1960s Hanna-Barbera production, both visually and storywise, Gordon is happily exhausted by life in the city, but when an invitation arrives to visit his cousin in the woodland, Gordon happily accepts. He arrives all geared up for the bright lights of the big woodland to find that one walks instead of taking a taxi, enjoys fireflies instead of the opera and dines wherever he hangs his floppy ears, as there are no restaurants. If modestly perplexed, Gordon is cool with the alternatives and knows he will miss the woodland when he leaves. Even a little dust-up with a bear doesn’t cause much of a ruffle in the pleasing waters of the countryside. Back in the metropolis, Gordon takes a moment to consider: “It’s a fun life, he thought. But it’s even better when you slow down. Just once in a while.” Fables lose a significant something when you can have your cake and eat it, too. Penner’s artwork is as sharp as a light switched on in the dark, and the simple interaction with the application is perfectly pleasant, but the predigested story doesn’t afford young readers the pleasure of thinking it over.
Disappointing. (Requires iOS 6 and above.) (iPad storybook app. 3-6)