This classic tale of karma, retold in rigid rhyme and re-tooled with a different moral than the original, will enchant more with its activities than with its storytelling.
While there is passing mention of his generosity on the first page, the Grimms' humble shoemaker who shared his good fortune with those less fortunate is nowhere to be found here among the musical shoes and creaky shelves. This shoemaker sells his shoes "for a lot of cash" and says, "if I work hard...I will be rich"—even though it is clear that he's not the one who is making the shoes! Illustrated in warm hues, every page is rich with touch animation, and the real charm of this app lies in the variety of interactions it offers. Kids can toss around all the tools in the shoe shop, open doors and windows, light and extinguish candles and even clear away cobwebs. All of the characters, right down to the mice in the corner, move and play, sigh, snore and even dream. The musical-shoes keyboard is tuned to sound great no matter how it is played, and many pages have features that respond to tilting the iPad.
With the thumbnail page scroll and the ability to turn wooden text and narrative off, kids can easily navigate and enjoy what this app has to offer. (iPad storybook app. 4-7)