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HIDING MONSTERS by Mike  Johnson


by Mike Johnson ; illustrated by Melanie McCall ; developed by Glowdot Productions

Age Range: 3 - 7

Pub Date: July 12th, 2012
Publisher: Squeaky Frog

Cuddly, agreeable versions of mythical monsters wait to be found in this breezy exploration book from the author, illustrator and developers behind Hiding Hannah (2011).

As in their previous app, the story employs a simple structure: Touch objects on screen to discover where someone is hiding; repeat in a different environment. In Hiding Hannah, a giggly toddler exasperated her parents by playing an ongoing game of hide-and-seek. In this app, the Loch Ness Monster, Bigfoot, a dragon, the Abominable Snowman and others can be found in their native lands—after a hunt. When they're discovered, surprisingly enough, they don't bloodily maul readers. Instead, they wave and say hello, as they've been systematically defanged for young readers. The hulking Yeti, for instance, has an awfully toothless nickname: Bommy. If the app lacks some of the spark of originality and easy humor of its predecessor, it makes up for it in the same kind of attention to detail and playful art that made the previous effort so successful. The backgrounds, including a Japanese city and the top of a gargoyle-guarded tower, are exotic but never scary or uninviting.

While it may make readers wonder just what's the point of having such utterly cuddly monsters, the app is still fun and snappily put together. (iPad storybook app. 3-7)