Petunia is a loveable underdog right from the start of this great digital book based on the print title published in 2010. This little girl has had some seriously bad luck on picture day in the past, from puffy hair, missing teeth and even pink eye! So this year she prepares carefully, but you know what they say about the best laid plans? Things for Petunia definitely go awry but a surprise ending makes for a satisfying read for elementary age children.
As a digital offering this title is simply but solidly made with easy swipe-style page turning and a clear font that highlights along with the expressive narration. There is also some very light animation and a few story-related sound effects. These are nice enhancements but nothing that would overshawdow the superb storytelling that is present in both words and pictures. This is a great bedtime or group storytime read.
Overall, this is a top notch storybook app with engaging illustrations and a storyline that is at times silly, sad and heart-warming. It is told with lots of word play on the letter "P", making it perfect for practicing this letter sound. The only thing lacking in this title is a page guide & home button, but other than that it is picture perfect. You'll laugh and cheer for little Petunia; my little boy was riveted by the story from begining to end. Highly recommended.
All reviews are of the app, not the platform/device. Based originally on iPad versions. Minor technical details may vary.
Cathy Breisacher/Christian Elden
8 - 10 Minutes
Based on non-digital book: Yes
Allows Own Narration:
Uses Motion: No
Age: 5 - 9
"Poor Petunia Pepper! Every year disaster strikes her on school picture day. Puffy hair, pumpkin-style smiles and pink eye help create pictures that only her family could love. But this year, Petunia promises herself things are going to change. She plans carefully for the perfect picture day. Unfortunately, she misses the school bus and begins a series of misadventures that lead to yet another picture day fiasco. In the end, Petunia spots her picture on the front page of the local paper, featuring her heroic rescue of a runaway poodle. Now that's a picture everybody in her class will love!" [Synopsis of print title, courtesy of Hopelessbibliophile.com & NetGalley]