Papa's Boy is a beautifully hand-drawn digital book about a father coming to terms with his child's interests. The father mouse was a boxing hero (among mice) and wishes his son was more like him. The boy instead dances ballet, even wearing a pink tutu and pointe shoes as he pirouettes about his room. Papa laments that this wasn't how life was supposed to be as he stares at the trophies and posters of his own youth.
The little boy, however, shows how valuable his skills really are one day when Papa gets trapped by the cat that lives in the toy shop where they reside. The son twirls and jumps in perfect time to the player piano, distracting the cat and helping both his dad and himself escape unharmed. "This is exactly how things were supposed to happen," concludes Papa on the last page of the book, after giving his son a big hug.
The book is nicely narrated and full of lovely illustrations. It also has very small animated touches with nice scenes of the boy mouse dancing to crisp piano music. It is, however, a bit touchy with the arrow page turns and has a slight darkening between pages that is a bit distracting. Otherwise this is a wonderful little title with a big message about fatherly love and letting our children follow their own path.
[The YouTube clip below is a very short sampling from the animated short film based on the same story - the book app is not digitally animated, though, with more traditional still images like those from an illustrated picture book.]
All reviews are of the app, not the platform/device. Based originally on iPad versions. Minor technical details may vary.
Leevi Lemmetty/Juka Lemmetty
6 - 8 Minutes
Based on non-digital book: No
Allows Own Narration:
Uses Motion: No
Age: 4 - 10
In a small toy shop a little mouse family lives at the edge of a piano leg. Papa, the patriarch of the family used to be a famous mouse-boxer, with many trophies to show for his years in the ring. He is disappointed that his son doesn't want to box or even do manly things and instead dances like a ballerina, hopping about in a pink tutu and pointe-shoes. "Things weren't supposed to be like this," he laments to himself as he trudges off to work as a piano tuner.
Every day he passes a mean cat in the toy shop and one day he gets trapped by the cat, sure to be eaten. Then out of nowhere comes his little boy, dancing on pointe with grace and speed. The distracts the cat, both freeing his father and also getting away himself with dainty steps and beautiful twirls. When they are safe, his father embraces him saying, "This is exactly how things were supposed to happen."