This is an adorable book app starring a girl named Astrid and her little friend Siri, an Artic fox. Astrid has a strand of magical purple thread and a talent for making clothing for the animals of the forest. Her designs are imaginative and include a series of outfits for the sheep, made from their own wool. She calls her designs the "Arctic Fairytale" collection, made for her Midsummer's Eve soiree.
This is one of those very interactive books that is a lot of fun for kids but may not necessarily enhance story comprehension. There are lots of cool 'magical' effects, like dragging a little needle & thread over many of the images, revealing the handmade costumes. The animals are also adorable, especially the sheep who sit daintily in the hair salon while they get their wool styled. The characters throughout are all lovingly detailed in this way, like the Puffin who runs a fancy hat shop. Beautiful images are one of the highlights of this book, presented with a layered quality, almost like something on a felt board.
Nice features include text that highlights as read (although it isn't always entirely in sync), music that can be turned off or on and a nice drop-down page guide. These features can be a bit touchy at times. There is also an easy to access link to the developer's website, accessible from the home page.
The book is very enjoyable without narration, however, and this mode was much more stable when tested. Text in this "Read Myself" mode sometimes has a small "+" sign next to it, though, indicating that there is more text to trigger on the page. When tapping this "+" it is easy to accidentally tap the string that drops down for the page guide, unfortunately. There is also one small extra where you can dress Astrid in a series of cute outfits that mix and match with shoes, hats and other accessories.
Overall, this is one of those really unique and delightfully presented storybooks, more for playing than reading, but worth a download for the fun alone. The story is cute, the narration is lovely, and the illustrations with interactive animations are truly enchanting. Little ones may find that this incredibly touchable book app inspires their own fashion adventures, even. Recommended!
All reviews are of the app, not the platform/device. Based originally on iPad versions. Minor technical details may vary.
Tara Murphy/Daley Muller
Arctic Star LLC
8 - 12 Minutes
Based on non-digital book: No
Allows Own Narration:
Uses Motion: No
Age: 3 - 8
Based on a Viking story (according to the book), comes the tale of a girl named Astrid who has the ability to make 'magical clothing' with a strand of purple thread. She meets many forest creatures in the Arctic, including a fox named Siri that becomes her companion. She designs beautiful and frilly outfits for all the animals and then plans a whole new line of spring dresses she calls the "Arctic Fairytale" collection.
When the sheep go to get their wool trimmed, Astrid asks for it to make a fine set of suits for the sheep to wear to her Midsummer's Eve tea party. She even goes to the local hat maker, a Puffin, who makes matching hats for the festive event. Then the animals gather cakes, cookies and cupcakes (with sprinkles), spread a blanket in the forest to celebrate the longest day of the year.
All the animals come dressed to the nines in Astrid's frilly, pink outfits. They then dine together on a picnic spread of cakes and pastries. To thank the sheep for all their wool, she then makes a large purple blanket. After that, all the friends spend the winter together at Astrid & Siri's home, cuddled together under the large quilt.