Kirkus Reviews QR Code
THE BIRTHDAY by Sylvia Van Ommen


by Sylvia Van Ommen & illustrated by Sylvia Van Ommen & developed by WingedChariot

Age Range: 1 - 4

Pub Date: June 17th, 2010
Publisher: WingedChariot

A sweet and simple app for toddlers. A mouse letter carrier starts her day and asks readers for help in delivering letters to various animals busy at home and work in the village. It’s her birthday, and she quietly laments at the end of the day that her bag is empty, without any birthday card for her. Not until she reaches home does she realize that she’s been delivering invitations to her own surprise party. The story is told mainly via the simply drawn, colorful illustrations, with minimal animation, sound effects and text (only speech bubbles, which are read aloud). The single touch-screen activity involves dragging envelopes to their destinations (where pulsing objects signal action), and there are no function buttons on the page. A separate sticker activity, available off the main menu, allows readers to stamp images of the fifteen animals featured in the story on a digital canvas, which can be saved to the device’s photo library. Readers can experience the story in English (British English, as the red postal equipment strongly suggests the Royal Mail), Dutch (De Verjaardag) or Chinese. Readers in search of whizbang animation and action may be disappointed, but the youngest readers will find this a satisfying picture book delivered digitally. (iPad storybook app. 1-4)