A simplified adaptation of a Grimm Brothers version of the more familiar French rendition of an old tale, with 10 interspersed screens of pop-up “fun” and “games.”
Despite all the filtering, the text differs from Perrault’s rendition only in minor details—leaving the putative “Count of Carabas” unnamed, for instance, and having Puss deliver animals to the king for the royal menagerie rather than his dinner table. The story is presented either in silent mode or by an expressive narrator (in a choice of four European languages). It pauses at too-frequent intervals for screens that not only drift when tilted for a 3-D effect, but feature touch-activated animations ranging from a game of whack-a-mouse and spinnable wheels to a wardrobe of cowboy, astronaut and other alternative garb for Puss. Like the cartoon art overall, the cat, though sporting the customary Three Musketeers–style floppy hat and footgear, is unmemorably generic. Despite smooth, easy navigation, the story moves in fits and starts thanks to the oversupply of sometimes only marginally relevant distractions.
One of a crowd, and not close to being a front-runner. (iPad storybook app. 6-8)