Snuggle Mountain is a new digital offering from PicPocket books, a developer that can be counted on for bringing wonderful picture books once in print back to new life as digital apps. This one is a beauty, published in 2003 and includes rich illustrations and lyrical text. The story follows little Emma as she wakes up early and climbs the 'snuggle mountain' that is her parent's bed, trying to wake the sleeping 'two-headed' giant for breakfast.
The book has nice educational enhancements, including highlighting words as the story is narrated and a list of ideas for reading readiness for Kindergarten. There are also several nice follow-up discussion questions and even a recipe for 'Snuggle Mountain Pancakes'. The parents play a background role to Emma's vivid imagination, capturing the magic of childhood in a way parents and kids will love.
This beautifully illustrated and narrated digital picture book is also lightly animated and interactive. There are many nice touches with sound effects including the dog barking and cat purring as well as Emma saying things like "yum" when the pancakes are served. The animations are the only downside of the book, being very choppy. When Emma's leg kicks or the dog's tail wags it almost looks as if something is broken instead of moving.
Otherwise this is an adorable tale and the animations are only a tiny part of the whole package. This is a great bedtime book and if I read a 'getting up' book with my child, this would be especially perfect. It is heart-warming and captures a very special morning ritual that is played out in households everywhere on weekend mornings. If you're after a great story with beautiful illustrations, this is a wonderful choice.
[iPhone version available separately through iTunes, Click HERE]
All reviews are of the app, not the platform/device. Based originally on iPad versions. Minor technical details may vary.
Lindsey Lane/Melissa Iwai
6 - 8 Minutes
Based on non-digital book: Yes
Allows Own Narration:
Uses Motion: No
Age: 3 - 8
Little Emma wakes up early and climbs up onto her parents bed pretending the whole time that she is climbing a mountain. When she reaches for a rock, it isn't a rock but instead a grey cat sleeping. Then she passes another animal on her way up 'Snuggle Mountain', this time the dog with paws in the air. When she gets to the top of the 'mountain' she hears the sounds of a 'two-headed' giant. So she climbs into the 'sleeping cave' with the giant and tries to wake it (her parents).
When Emma gets all four eyes to open she says, "Wake up." The giant moans and the mountain shakes. Emma resists the power of the sleeping cave because her stomach grumbles, saying, "It's time for breakfast!" Now she is standing on the top of the mountain! The cat & dog leap off the bed and everyone heads downstairs. She enjoys a pile of pancakes as tall as Snuggle Mountain. A recipe for pancakes, kindergarten reading readiness goals and questions follow the story.