The winter games have come to the nice icy land ... and Tacky and his brood are competing against rivals from the Highlands, Lowlands and more. But will they win a medal? It seems at first that having an 'odd bird' on their team is working against them. In the end, Tacky's unconventional approach is a winning one, although not before several hilarious plot twists.
Like other omBooks from Oceanhouse Media, this title is solidly made with simple swipe-style page turning. It would benefit from the addition of a page guide, but is otherwise easily navigated by little fingers. The story, by Helen Lester, is beloved in print, published in 2005. The digital version is no exception, only adding to the otherwise delightful story.
The app is also lightly interactive, engaging and well-narrated (right down to the truly awful singing). It also enhances early reading skills, with narration that highlights as it is read and images that name themselves when tapped. For example, touch Tacky's shirt and the word "shirt" appears on screen while it is spoken aloud by the narrator.
Overall, this is a top-notch digital picture book. It has a fun story that kids will love. The Tacky books are particularly good for teaching about appreciating difference. Tacky's less-than-admirable habits are also good discussion points about accepting others despite their faults.
All reviews are of the app, not the platform/device. Based originally on iPad versions. Minor technical details may vary.
Helen Lester/Lynn Munsinger
Oceanhouse Media, Inc.
10 - 12 Minutes
Based on non-digital book: Yes
Allows Own Narration:
Uses Motion: No
Age: 3 - 8
Plot synopsis of print title, courtesy Amazon.com: "A-huff-and-a-puff-and-a-huff-and-a-puff-and-a-huff-and-a-puff" "WHAT'S HAPPENING?" Tacky the penguin wants to know. The Winter Games, that's what's happening. And Tacky and his fellow penguins Goodly, Lovely, Angel, Neatly, and Perfect have to work hard to get in shape so they can represent Team Nice Icy Land in the athletic competitions. After rigorous training, they're ready - but are the games ready for Tacky? Will his antics keep Team Nice Icy Land from winning a medal? From bobsledless racing and ski jumping to speed skating, Tacky lends his unique, exuberant style to each competition. In laugh-out-loud scenes of Tacky and his fellow penguins' athletic debacles, Tacky reminds readers of the underlying joy and enthusiasm that propells athletes to greatness. So get ready to cheer for Team Nice Icy Land and let the games begin!