Magic Thumbelina is a gorgeously illustrated version of the classic children's story about a little 'thumb' sized girl who goes on a journey among the small creatures of the forest. She meets frogs, a mouse, a mole (whom she almost marries), a swallow she nurses back to health and finally, a forest elf who turns out to be a prince (whom she does marry, of course).
This digital title is lightly animated and interactive with high quality music throughout. It is not narrated and is a bit difficult to read aloud smoothly for want of a bit of polishing in the text. The story follows the tradtional tale but seems to have been poorly edited, missing prepositions and displaying some interesting grammar mistakes that may be computer generated. A quick edit by a native English speaker could clear this up easily for a future update to make this title truly delightful. [I'm pretty sure they meant she was born in a 'flowerpot' not a 'flowerport' for instance.]
The book also is solidly made, although there isn't a home button (only a table of contents accessible on the 2nd page and a 're-read' button on the last page). Page turn is by simple swiping. Interactive elments aren't always easy to find, especially since there isn't something interactive on every page, but when you do find these elements, they are quite satisfying.
Overall, this is a cute title that just needs a bit of polishing to be a hit. I'd also love to see the addition of narration once the text is edited properly. The visual appeal of this book is exceptional, though, bringing a favorite story to life through detailed illustrations.
All reviews are of the app, not the platform/device. Based originally on iPad versions. Minor technical details may vary.
Hans Christian Andersen
6 - 8 Minutes
Based on non-digital book: No
Allows Own Narration:
Uses Motion: No
Age: 4 - 9
Thumbelina was inspired by other folktales, like "Tom Thumb". From Wikipedia, "In the first English translation of 1847 by Mary Howitt, the tale opens with a beggar woman giving a peasant's wife a barleycorn in exchange for food. Once planted, a tiny girl, Thumbelina (Tommelise), emerges from its flower. One night, Thumbelina, asleep in her walnut-shell cradle, is carried off by a toad who wants the miniature maiden as a bride for her son. With the help of friendly fish and a butterfly, Thumbelina escapes the toad and her son, and drifts on a lily pad until captured by a stag-beetle. The insect discards her when his friends reject her company. Thumbelina tries to protect herself from the elements, but when winter comes, she is in desperate straits. She is finally given shelter by an old fieldmouse and tends her dwelling in gratitude. The mouse suggests Thumbelina marry her neighbor, a mole, but Thumbelina finds repulsive the prospect of being married to such a creature. She escapes the situation by fleeing to a far land with a swallow she nursed back to health during the winter. In a sunny field of flowers, Thumbelina meets a tiny flower-fairy prince just her size and to her liking, and they wed. She receives a pair of wings to accompany her husband on his travels from flower to flower, and a new name, Maia."