Wish Upon a Star introduces readers to a surreal world of dreaming villagers in this new title from the Touchybooks collection. This interactive and lightly animated book app tells a tale about dreamers who long for better lives. When mysterious 'falling' stars make their dreams come true, each of the four main characters discovers that the things they left behind weren't so bad afterall.
This app features interesting interactivity alongside color-drenched graphics. The book alternates between pages with just text and wordless pages with illustrations and interactivity. It is solidly made with arrow page turning (in the cool shape of flowers). Beautiful, but haunting music accompanies the lush graphics.
The music is almost too disturbing for a book aimed at young children, making me hesitate to recommend it for anyone under 8. When I turned the music off, the story felt much less menacing ... the addition of a setting to mute or change this music would be nice for a future update. I would also recommend a page guide & home button for a book this long.
Overall, this is a very unique book app with gorgeous illustrations. The story is a bit esoteric for youngsters, but has a 'hip' quality that might make it engaging to older kids who are not traditionally the target audience for picture books. Certainly the moral of this story is one that we can appreciate more as we get older ... always be careful what you wish for ... it may come true and not be quite as ideal as you imagined.
[An iPhone version of this app is available separately, click HERE.]
All reviews are of the app, not the platform/device. Based originally on iPad versions. Minor technical details may vary.
6 - 10 Minutes
Based on non-digital book: No
Allows Own Narration:
Uses Motion: No
Age: 8 - 12 +
There was a place where everyone was dreaming. The four main characters are: A little boy dreaming about toys, a woman dreaming of being thin, an old man dreaming of being young again and a little dog dreaming that he is big and loud. As the four gaze at the night, stars fall onto the sleeping quartet. The stars make all their dreams come true, "but not everything is as perfect as it seems ..."
Holding onto the stars, the characters are flown through the sky to their wished-for scenarios. But the boy is unhappy with so many toys, the woman becomes so thin that it frightens people, the dog hates being so scary that no one will pet him and the old man misses his grandkids and all the things about his full life now that he is young again.
So, they all let go of the stars that granted their dream wishes. In the end they are all grateful to be back in their lives again - the same lives they had felt so depressed about before. The stars had reversed the 'spell' of being blue that had been cast on the dreamers. Now they dreamt about things that they loved, things they already had. The story ends with: "Be careful what you wish for, sometimes wishes come true!"