The Three Little Pigs-Nosy Crow animated storybook by Nosy Crow Limited

There are lot of choices in the app store for lovers of the three little pigs, but very few stand out. This version, the first book app by Nosy Crow, is one of the very best! It is interactive in unique and fun ways that make the story feel more 'alive' than any other ebook I've read with my child. They even take advantage of the iPad's microphone, using it to pick up the sound from 'blowing' at the screen - which then triggers the wolf's classic "huff & puff" action. 

The reader gets to help the pigs build their three little houses, too. Flick each pig to get them to toss a bundle of building materials (straw, wood or bricks) at the incomplete structure until it is built. And Read more …

Three Little Pigs and the Secrets of a Popup Book by Game Collage, LLC

Three Little Pigs and the Secrets of a Popup Book is a phenomenal offering in digital form.  On the iPad, in particular, it is a unique book offering in a rather crowded marketplace.  If it hasn't been on your radar before, it certainly should be.  I am delighted to finally have a version of the three little pigs than I can whole-heartedly recommend! 

And while this version does have a very 'unsoftened' ending (not only do two of the pigs get eaten, but the wolf is also boiled alive), my four year old did not find this tale scary. I think for fairy tales about personified animals, you can get away with a lot more of the original story, especially if the grizzly elements Read more …

Moo, Baa, La La La! - Sandra Boynton by Loud Crow Interactive Inc.

Moo, Baa, La, La, La is my favorite of the Boynton book apps (at least so far). These cute books are from Loud Crow, the same developer that made The Going to Bed Book and the PopOut series. In this cute title, you can tap the characters to hear authentic animal noises. That is, except for the three pigs on the second page, who sing, "La La La". The print book, published in 1982, was also a chart topper with over one hundred 5-Star reviews at Amazon.com.

This app has a similar style to the other Boynton book apps, with lots of touchable elements that bounce slightly like a true pop-up book (and come alive with the addition of snorts, quacks and oinks). There are also surprising touches Read more …

Fierce Grey Mouse HD by Tizio BV

Prepare yourself for one very cute mouse story. This book opens with a little grey mouse removing the word 'little' to put the word 'fierce' in its place for the title page. The letters are like cut-outs from magazine copy, giving the book a whimsical quality. The illustrations are hand-drawn and color-drenched, creating the perfect backdrop to the story. Every page is also filled with small but delightful animated elements triggered by tapping on the characters.

Little grey mouse wants to be fierce. So he lifts weights, practices pouncing and perfects his roar. Then he hides in a tree to wait for someone to scare. His good friends come by first, calling for their little mouse friend to Read more …

Nighty Night! HD - The bedtime story app for children by Fox and Sheep GmbH

Nighty Night! begins with, "Night falls. The moon is high. All the people are ready to sleep as they turn off the lights. But wait! Look at the farmhouse. There are still some lights on. The animals are sleepy, too. Do you want to turn off the lights?" A peaceful farm appears, where you can tap on any one of seven lit areas on the page. The next scene shows an animal still awake (with a light switch nearby). Tap the switch (each light & switch is different) and the animal settles into sleep, closing their eyes.

After all the animals have been put to bed, there is just one person still up - a little boy (and the reader). The last scene is of this little boy waving out his lit Read more …

Nursery Rhymes with StoryTime by ustwo

This incredibly unique app book is one of many that focuses on nursery rhymes. The team that developed this book has really gone the extra mile, though, making Nursery Rhymes with StoryTime one of the most interactive and 'touchable' apps I've ever reviewed. It's nearly impossible to keep your hands off this app, even for adults. Now with added narration & two more nursery rhymes, this digital storybook is nearly perfect.

The developers, ustwo & Atomic Antelope, have been very responsive to customer requests and suggestions and have several updates planned. They seem to have a great team that creates not only beautiful production values but also implements changes more quickly than Read more …

Bizzy Bear on the Farm by Nosy Crow Limited

This original book from Nosy Crow is based on a series of print 'toddler' board books published in 2011 and features adorable illustrations by Benji Davies. Children will love assisting Bizzy as he helps out on the farm. Interactivity and character dialogue is driven by the reader, including lots of variety and room for open-ended exploration. In order for this cute cub to complete his chores, readers will need to help him by feeding the pigs, herding sheep, collecting eggs, picking apples and much more.

Although this app is no fairy tale, it does have many things in common with Nosy Crow's other two book apps (Cinderella & The Three Little Pigs). It is polished and solidly made, Read more …

Finding Frankie Frog by Verlag Friedrich Oetinger GmbH

Finding Frankie Frog is an adorable storybook in digital form, featuring light animation and interactivity that enhances the story. For a free app, this is an extraordinary find! But even if it were a paid download, this book app has a lot to offer, including puzzles and a fun storyline that children will enjoy.

The story follows the hide 'n seek game of 6 friends: Billy Beaver, Pinky Pig, Elvis Elephant, Robbie Rabbit, Harry Hedgehog and Frankie Frog. In just five short pages, this delightfully interactive title has the group of friends playing a game where they try to find each other's hiding spots. As each character finds one of the friends, the person who is 'it' and everyone who has Read more …

Barnyard Mystery by Hamson Design Group Pty Ltd

Are you looking for a digital picture book that allows your child to 'choose their own adventure' with a story that is different every time you read? Or maybe one that includes your child's name, too? Well, look no further than this delightful new app that tells the story of a family visiting a farm. The family (which includes your child if you enter their name on the title page) is asked to help Farmer Bill find a cute baby chick that has gotten lost. The search takes them all over the farm, with each change in location prompting a decision by the reader.

I'm not sure how many different story combinations there are for this title, but it was a slightly different story every time I read it Read more …

Nighty Night Circus - Bedtime story for kids by Fox and Sheep GmbH

“Nighty Night Circus“ is the sequel to the most popular bedtime app of all time, Apple App of the Year 2012, “Nighty Night!“ Please see our review of Nighty Night for more details about this series - http://digital-storytime.com/review.php?id=201. Note: This title has no text and only limited narration, comparable to a wordless picture book. Contains in-app purchases (under parental gate).

Highly Recommended!

This app has been thoroughly evaluated by our staff. Please click on the 'star ratings' tab above, to see how it fared in all nine of our rating categories. See synopsis tab for more details about the storyline.

Animal SnApp: Farm by Nosy Crow Limited

Nosy Crow's latest app is sure to please the toddler and preschool set (and their parents) with Animal SnAPP, an app that contains a mix and match book, with a series of six animal 'tops & bottoms' that slide together. Once each of these animals is connected to its 'other half', a short story begins, giving young readers a six-pack of readers all-in-one app.

Whether narrated in a delightful & crisp British accent, or in 'read myself' mode, there is plenty to play with in Animal SnAPP, including animations that are top-notch and additional dialogue in speech bubbles from several of the barnyard animals. The stories are sweet but very simple, making this an app I would recommend for Read more …

Olivia Acts Out by Polin8, LLC

Olivia is an adorable pig introduced to readers originally through the print books of Ian Falconer a decade ago. This digital title is adapted from a print book published in 2009, based on the more recent animated series from Nickelodeon. In this story Olivia has the chance to be in the school play but is disappointed that she is in a minor role. She handles it with grace and a bit of star power in the end.

The book is solidly made with swipe-style page turns and text in a drop-down box. The text is rather small and I would have liked to see highlighting as narrated, but I did appreciate that you could remove the text to see more of the whole picture. The app also contains an animated video Read more …

Chris P. Bacon - My Life So Far... by Oceanhouse Media, Inc.

Crisp P. Bacon: My Life So Far, by Len Lucero & Kristina Tracy and developed by Oceanhouse Media, is a heartwarming story about a lovable and inspiring handicapped piglet. This tale is based on the true story and popular YouTube video about a baby pig born with a congenital defect that hinders mobility in his rear legs. Len Lucero, a veterinarian, builds Chris his own cart to enable him to get around independently. This inspirational story is all about how Len designs this 10 day old pig a wheel chair made of toy parts, and how Chris is given a second lease on life. This endearing app has much to teach in the way of empathy and celebrating diversity.

On YouTube, Pig in Read more …

The Berenstain Bears' BIG Bedtime Book by Oceanhouse Media, Inc.

The Berenstain Bears' BIG Bedtime Book was published in print in 2008, and is a great value in digital, featuring six stories from Mrs. Grizzle, the Berenstain bears' babysitter. The stories she tells the cubs are fun twists on familiar fairy tales, starring the bears themselves. The titles included are: 

1. The Three Little Cubs and the Big Bad Pig

2. Goldibear and the Three People

3. The Gingerbread Bear

4. The Three Billy Goats Gruff Meet the Bogg Brothers

5. The Little Red Hen

6. Little Red Grizzly Hood

Each story is under ten minutes on auto play, making all six great for bedtime reading, even for shared storytime. There are also lightly interactive elements that add both fun and Read more …

Axel Scheffler's Flip Flap Farm by Nosy Crow Limited

Nosy Crow has done it again with Flip Flap Farm, a companion app to the print book of the same name. Featuring the delightful illustrations of Axel Scheffler, this well-crafted app is sure to please the toddler and preschool set (and their parents). Featuring the tops and bottoms of eleven animals that mix and match, including: dog, mouse, pig, rabbit, goat, squirrel, turkey, sheep, horse, cow, and chicken. This creates a total of 121 possible combinations, along with well-crafted, rhyming text (and an unending stream of giggles).

Young readers will love the whimsy of this app, with creatures like the "Mig" (mouse top, pig bottom) and "Cheep" (chicken top, sheep bottom). A Read more …

Pigeon Presents Mo... on the Go! by Disney Publishing Worldwide Applications

The ever-popular Mo Willems' is back in another adorable digital title. This app is light on storytelling features but picture-perfect when it comes to the giggles and whimsy that Willems' artwork usually elicits. Adults and children will enjoy five games in this app, including a Leonardo's Monster Maker (interactive flip book), Elephant & Piggie's Dance-O-Rama (Elephant & Piggie in a 'dance-off'), Dream Drive (A Pigeon-themed maze game), Mo's Squillems (Creative Drawing Game with Squiggles) and Knuffle Bunny Sticker Pictures (Take a photo & add Willem's-themed stickers). This is a game-pack sure to please fans of the artist and his literary works, but may be Read more …

Giggly Spider by B.H.E. Peels

This short, sweet digital title is not narrated but features beautiful illustrations and just the right touch of animation and interactivity for toddlers and preschoolers. Each page has an engaging image of an animal, insect or bird and then a second page with that creature's home (or bed). The interactivity is simple but delightful, from helping a spider create its web to splattering a pig with mud. In the end, the reader pulls the covers over a sleeping child, a perfect way to set the mood for bedtime.

As a digital title this app doesn't have a lot of settings, just arrow page turning and a way to reset the book at the end. A page guide and home button would be nice additions, but for Read more …

The Lettermen on the Farm by SN Squared Limited

This fun digital storybook under the category "Education" is interactive in a way that not only makes reading fun, but reinforces spelling, reading and sight words. The 'lettermen' themselves are simple but engaging cartoon letters with hands and feet. They are very appealing to kids and have great expressions that match the words they are forming on each page.

This tale has the 'lettermen' visiting a farm for the day. The narration, a British English speaker, is crisp and clear. The Lettermen was a series of books created in the late 1980's by Roger Knights. This book was published in print in 1993. According to the information page in the book, "It was never intended to be an Read more …

Handmade Mother Goose HD with EveryPage by Charles Kriel

Handmade Mother Goose is an app that has a wonderful look and feel. Every page has interactive elements that animate 12 different familiar Mother Goose nursery rhymes. Hickory Dickory Dock has moveable clock hands and a squeaking mouse that bounces with realistic physics. And my favorite, Mary Mary quite contrary has a watering can you touch to shower her flowers with water.

This book is one of those that feels simultaneously like an old-fashioned book while adding the 'wow' factor that only the iPad can bestow. The pages are handcrafted with a layered look that has paper, felt and wood elements. There are also high quality sounds, including music and the talented narration of Charles Read more …

Tractor Mac, You're A Winner HD by PicPocket Books

Tractor Mac is a charismatic red tractor with headlight eyes.  In "You're a Winner", based on the print book published by Billy Steers in 2007, Tractor Mac and Farmer Bill are getting ready for the county fair and a big tractor pull.  The illustrations and artwork are a perfect fit for this story about being a good sport when you don't win and instead 'winning' by being helpful.  In this story, the carousel breaks down, so even though Mac is disappointed when he loses the tractor pull, he gets to feel useful by using his motor to get the carousel turning again.  All the children are very happy and Mac realizes there are more ways to be a winner than just winning a Read more …

Tractor Mac Builds HD by PicPocket Books

Tractor Mac is a charismatic red tractor with headlight eyes.  He and his friend Lucy (a cute green tractor who's gender is distinguished from Mac only by her adorable little eyelashes), help with an old fashioned barn-raising in this charming book.  The illustrations and artwork are a perfect fit for this story about working together and sticking to the job, even when you don't want to.  He converses with the farm animals around him as he works hard milling wood.  They tease him for being stuck, but he sticks with it and then finds out he's been making planks for a new barn.  All the neighboring townsfolk come to help with the building and Tractor Mac realizes he's Read more …

Oh Say Can You Say? - Dr. Seuss by Oceanhouse Media, Inc.

Published in print in 1979, Oh Say Can You Say?, is a Dr. Seuss book of tongue twisters, containing crazy phrases that will tie your tongue up in knots (and tickle your funny bone). It is a rather long book, full of the whimsical language and illustrations that make a Dr. Seuss title an instant classic.

For the read-a-long effect, each word is highlighted as it is narrated. Tap on any word to hear it spoken, even in the 'read-it-myself' mode. Most of the Dr. Seuss books are great for children learning to read because they are filled with simple words and while this title goes beyond 'sight' words it should be an enjoyable read for kids 6 and up. For younger kids (and adults who would rather Read more …

Fiete – A day on a farm by Ahoiii Entertainment UG (haftungsbeschraenkt)

A delightful, wordless picture book is found in this sweet and simple app for young children. Parents and caregivers can explore this title with their youngsters, telling stories as they explore each setting. The app includes matching games and other memory activities, alongside a series of scenes with simple tasks to complete, like planting a seed or picking apples. With over 20 games and scenes to explore, this app is chock full of activities to engage and educate little ones.

Recommended!

This app has been thoroughly evaluated by our staff. Please click on the 'star ratings' tab above, to see how it fared in all nine of our rating categories. See synopsis tab for more details about the Read more …

Michael Garland's Icarus Swinebuckle Interactive Picture Book by Paul Scaturro

Michael Garland's Icarus Swinebuckle is a richly illustrated story with fun interactivity and several nicely animated scenes. It's the story of a pig who is a cobbler. He is obsessed with flying and when his flying contraption turns out to work, everyone in town is impressed. But like his name-sake, this Icarus also flies too close to the sun, causing his wings to come apart. This title is based on a print book, published in 2000.

There are some great animated scenes in this app, in the form of short videos interspersed with interactive pages. These videos are not present in 'read myself' mode, which makes it the preferred setting for more traditional bedtime reading. The interactivity Read more …

Three Little Pigs - S28 by Stella 28 Limited

Fairy tales are not difficult to find in app form. Of all the tales retold in digital (and print), the Three Little Pigs is one of the most popular. But all fairy tales are not created equal. This title is unique, not because the story is especially original, but because of the educational enhancements. Readers of fairy tales will be disappointed if they are looking for a quirky or interesting take on this famous story, but for teachers and parents, this is an app that is set up perfectly to engage reluctant readers.

The story is simple, following the plot of the three pigs and their homes made of straw, sticks and brick. I asked my son (age 6) after the first read through to tell me about Read more …

Old Macdonald Had a Farm Full by Bacciz by Bacciz,LLC

Old MacDonald keeps many animals, eleven in all (see synopsis for full list), in this sing-along story featuring the popular children's tune in verse. This musical app is full of interactivity that will surprise and delight youngsters. You may have "E-I-E-I-O" stuck in your head after playing, but your little ones will be all smiles.

The tune, like many children's songs, may grate on the ears of adults with the many re-playings young children adore, but it is catchy. Animations are simple, but polished movements of the images, adding a fun touch, but the real highlight of this app is the interactivity. Young readers can tap an egg to see a chick hatch, splash mud on the pigs, and even swipe Read more …

Big Red Barn by Dipali Vaidya

This is a simple but engaging book for very young children. It has cheery, colorful images of a farm, farmer, barn and lots of animals. Each page begins with a number and corresponding group of animals, from 1 dog barking all the way up to 10 geese honking. For interactivity, tap any number to hear it read aloud.

The child can also tap on a little image of each animal featured to hear sound effects that match the noise described (i.e. barking, honking, ...). This makes the book fun for kids, although a bit noisy. My son enjoyed this book so much he wanted to read it over and over. Adults may find the repetitive story & noises less charming, but the book is perfect developmentally for Read more …

Three Little Pigs : Star Tale - Interactive Fairy Tales for Kids by WiseKids Corporation

Star Tale (a division of Wise Kids) has come out with a beautifully rendered addition of the classic tale with their Three Little Pigs: Star Tale – Interactive Tales for Kids. One of nine books in a series that focuses on story content; Star Tale delivers a multisensory approach to each book. As the stories unfold, they leave one with a unique memorable experience, complete with discussion points and portraying life lessons. Each book offers professional narration, original music and artwork for each story. Let’s look at the Three Little Pigs – Interactive Tales for Kids and check out what makes this book so special.

On opening, choose between Read to Me, Read Read more …

Mr. Pinkerton by Emantras Inc

Mr. Pinkerton is a very fat pig that really wants to go on a walk.  But the gate in the barn is too small for him to squeeze through.  Overnight, a storm destroys the barn and the next day, Mr. Pinkerton gets to go outside.  When he returns from his walk, a new barn has been built with NO gate this time.  Mr. Pinkerton is very happy.  I'm not sure if the best solution to being fat is to remove the doors on your home, but this is a whimsical story that my son enjoyed reading. 

The book has an interesting feature I haven't seen in an iPad book before, a sleep mode.  Tap on it and the book automatically goes dark and begins telling the story with audio Read more …

Three Little Pigs Storychimes by Sienna Entertainment, LLC

Storychimes has many digital book offerings for iphone/ipad, with most at the reasonable price of $0.99. This review is of the paid version of the three pigs, however there is a free version available. Most of the Storychimes free apps are now ad supported, so be warned if you find this inappropriate in an app for young kids.

Unfortunately, I can't give this book a very strong recommendation. It's not that it isn't cute, because it is, in a cartoonish way. While I prefer softer graphics for children's books, this is clearly a style that appeals to kids. The text scrolls in what is described as a karaoke style that goes along with the cartoonish quality of the book overall.

I think most Read more …


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