This new release from Winged Chariot brings Marianne Dubuc's delightful print title published in 2010 to the iPad. It's not so much a story as a journey, told in either English or French. One's whole world as a child centers around the home, and in this title the reader is taken on an imaginative trip from the hill where a little house stands all the way into deep space and back again.
Told with simple elegance and perfectly timed narration, this title exemplifies how a story can be lightly enhanced with just the slightest amount of interactivity and still create an immersive digital reading experience. Beautiful, hand-drawn colored-pencil etchings pulse slightly and can be moved on each page as the slow but satisfying story unfolds. Travel from the hill where a little house stands to distant lands, seas filled with pirate ships and a universe of stars.
Children & adults will be charmed by this lovely book app, although page turning is touchy; my child and I easily triggered page turns when we meant to be moving images instead. The book also doesn't have much in the way of settings, with no page guide or way to turn off the sound for a 'read myself' mode. But these deficiencies are easily overlooked given the otherwise polished reading experience.
In Front of My House is one of the most beautiful iPad books you will ever read. It is filled with gorgeous illustrations and lovely narration that will have readers of all ages enthralled. Although quite long, it even makes an excellent bedtime story. Only minor technical issues stand between this app and a 5-star rating. Highly recommended!
All reviews are of the app, not the platform/device. Based originally on iPad versions. Minor technical details may vary.
12 - 15 Minutes
Based on non-digital book: Yes
Allows Own Narration:
Uses Motion: No
Age: 3 - 10
English • French •
In Front of My House is a whimsical celebration of a child's imagination and all the places it can travel. This circular story begins and ends in a tidy front yard, but in between takes the reader to mountains and mysterious caves, up to outer space, down into the ocean and beyond. It's a journey as boundless and surprising as young imaginations. Filled with inventive and delightful twists, this charming story reveals a child's fancy taking flight, showing how imaginative play can begin in a place as mundane as a front yard, reach to the stars, then return back to the same place. Children will recognize a kindred imagination in Marianne Dubuc's joyful illustrations and simple text. [Synopsis of print edition, courtesy of Amazon.com]