This delightful fable is told with a modern twist. The story starts with two kids in Chicago waiting for their grandparents to arrive from India. The grandfather brings the "Panchatantra" to share with his grandkids. It is a collection of Indian fables retold the world over, with stories about animals that teach many lessons. In this tale, a hare outsmarts a fierce lion by tricking him into thinking another lion is in a well. The lion dives after his foe, leaving the forest safe for the animals.
The illustrations are bright and colorful, featuring modern scenes from a suburban Chicago home, mixed with more traditional pictures of the story "The Lion & the Hare". The book starts with the grandfather telling the kids about the Panchatantra. Even after he starts the tale, the story reverts back to the kids on several pages. I liked this style and it gave me a chance to ask my son the same questions the grandfather was asking his grandkids - mostly questions about story comprehension.
The book has nice music and narration. "Read to Me" mode is auto-play but without narration it has easy page turning & navigation. In "Read Myself" mode, the 'home' button covers up part of the story's text on a couple pages, but otherwise it is a nicely executed app. I really enjoyed the approach of having the grandparents visiting to start the tale, too. It's refreshing after so many app books focusing on fairytales.
The moral of the story is: "With cleverness of mind, you can overpower even the strongest of enemies." This book gives the child reading more context about folklore and may also inspire them to connect with their elders' stories. Top notch storytelling, nicely packaged in digital form.
All reviews are of the app, not the platform/device. Based originally on iPad versions. Minor technical details may vary.
IDEAS for U
Green Broccoli, LLC
10 - 15 Minutes
Based on non-digital book: No
Allows Own Narration:
Uses Motion: No
Age: 4 - 8 +
In this tale, the lion is feared and kills many animals in the forest until one day the animals send one animal a day to satiate the beast. When it is the hare's turn, he outsmarts the lion by telling him of another lion in the woods who is taking over his territory. The hare leads the lion to a well and tells him his competitor is inside. The lion, seeing his fierce reflection, dives in and is vanquished.
The Panchatantra ('Five Principles') is a collection of original Indian animal fables in verse and prose. The original Sanskrit work, which some scholars believe was composed in the 3rd century BCE, is attributed to Vishnu Sharma. However, it is based on older oral traditions and is one of the most widely known in the world. [Source: Wikipedia]