A Troop is a Group of Monkeys by LITTLE BAHALIA PUBLISHING LLC

Little Bahalia Publishing's first book app, A Troop is a Group of Monkeys, is a short but sweet title featuring gorgeous illustrations with polished animation and well-crafted interactive elements. Each page has a different animal featured with the proper plural term for a group of each species. From a parliament of owls to a tower of giraffes, children will enjoy learning about the unique (and often comical) names for multiple creatures of any type. Among my child's favorites was the bloat of hippopotami and the quiver of cobras.

The story is simple, but well put together with subtle alliteration and nicely paced rhyming text. Colorful and engaging illustrations come to life with a Read more …

Chimps Should Be Chimps Storybook - Lincoln Park Zoo and Project ChimpCARE by Manning Productions

"In a zoo in a town, like one that you know ..." begins this storybook about our closest primate relatives. We are introduced to the zoo where a 50th birthday party is happening for 'old Poe'. His grand-daughter, Lulu, asks questions about his life that he tells to the reader in brief passages that go back in time. Poe was forced to be in the circus and in movies, showing a dark side to the love affair humans have with their nearest primate kin.

As an educational title, this book is well made and has a nicely crafted story. Enhancements are not quite animation, but do provide movement and great sound effects as the illustrations are panned-over to show each of Poe's reflections on his past. Read more …

Ten Giggly Gorillas by Wasabi Productions Pty Ltd

This is an adorable, animated counting book from Graham Nunn, creator of the Larry Lizard series of book apps. Ten cute primates swing from the branches of a tree on every page. Each one has a different item; from a pirate's hat to a teddy bear, each animal is different. On every page, the reader is asked to 'tickle' one of the gorillas under the arm. After tapping the right gorilla, the animal swings around, giggling until he falls off the tree. Now the count is down by one ...

The story goes on like this for ten pages, until there are no gorillas left. Now the reader will see the page slide down to show a lower part of the same tree with all the gorillas hanging on. The Read more …

Five Little Monkeys Wash the Car by Oceanhouse Media

This is another 'Five Monkeys' book from the beloved book series by Eileen Christelow. Like Five Monkeys Jumping on the Bed, this is an adorably illustrated ebook based on a print title published in 2000. When I checked the Amazon.com reviews for the print version I discovered that even the lowest rated reviews 'highly recommend' this title - the series is just that good. In digital form, these books are transformed with sound, interactivity and text that highlights as it is read.

In this story, the monkeys try to help mama sell their old beat-up car by washing, painting & perfuming the vehicle (it still doesn't run). Then they push it down the hill in an effort to get more Read more …

Five Little Monkeys Sitting in a Tree by Oceanhouse Media, Inc.

This is another 'Five Monkeys' book from the beloved book series by Eileen Christelow. Like Five Monkeys Jumping on the Bed, this is an adorably illustrated ebook based on a print title published in 2000. When I checked the Amazon.com reviews for the print version I discovered dozens of 5 star reviews - the series is just that good. In digital form, these books are transformed with sound, interactivity and text that highlights as it is read.

In this story, the monkeys are on a picnic with Mama and while she naps, they all climb into a tree and begin taunting a crocodile. One by one, they appear to fall into the river and get eaten with a 'SNAP!' This could be disturbing to both Read more …

Five Little Monkeys Go Shopping by Oceanhouse Media, Inc.

I love this series by Eileen Christelow, but I always think, "Poor Mama!" Funny & full of fun plot twists plus a surprise ending, this title has it all. In this story, Mama is taking her brood on a shopping trip for new school clothes. As they arrive at the store, she says, "Stick with me and don't go wandering off!"

The monkeys wander off, of course, making for a fun story with lots of interesting math. Mama counts the monkeys several times during the story, never quite getting things to add up to five. Fewer monkeys is a big concern and sends Mama on a frantic search to find the missing monkeys ... but what could it mean when she counts more than five?!? This is one funny and engaging Read more …

Hat Monkey by Fox and Sheep GmbH

"Monkey is Coming! Can you open the door?" begins this unique storytelling app by talented author/illustrator Chris Haughton. Developed into an app by Fox & Sheep, this title includes the first few sample pages of Haughton's print publications, including A Bit Lost, Oh No, George! and SHH! We have a plan. The main attraction in the app, however, is Haughton's exceptional storytelling in a new, digital environment.

After tapping the screen (with just the quote above), an image appears of a door and a window. Periodically a little figure knocks on the door and window, prompting youngsters to let the little monkey with a tassled ski cap into the room by touching the doornob. Once in the Read more …

Monkey And The Crocodile (for iPad) - by Niyaa by Kunal Desai

This instructive folktale is from the Panchatantra, a collection of Indian animal fables. It tells the story of a crocodile that tries to outsmart a monkey in order to eat his heart. The monkey is fooled at first but turns out to be the smarter of the two. The story is simple enough for children to understand but also filled with complexities that make for good discussion.

As a digital title, this one has a nice array of settings, including a home button and help menu. It features easy to read text as well as simple, arrow-style page turning. I found the narration included to be a bit 'over-expressive' but that can be a matter of taste. In addition to the English narration, this app has an Read more …

Five Little Monkeys Bake a Birthday Cake by Oceanhouse Media, Inc.

I love this series by Eileen Christelow, but I always think, "Poor Mama!" Funny & full of fun plot twists plus a surprise ending, this title, published in print in the late 90's, has it all. The book was originally titled, "Don't Wake Mama!" which is fitting as the monkeys try to bake a cake and make Mama a present without waking her up. This book doesn't have the counting down rhythm that some of the other Five Monkeys titles have, but it is charming nonetheless.

From the beloved series by Eileen Christelow, this is an adorably illustrated ebook based on a print title published in 1996. In digital form, these books are transformed with sound, interactivity and text that Read more …

Five Little Monkeys Collection #1 by Oceanhouse Media, Inc.

An exceptional new app for young readers (with five books in one) is now available from Oceanhouse Media! This is the digital version of the print collection, released in 2009 for the 20th-anniversary of the Five Little Monkeys books, by Eileen Christelow.

This collection includes the following digital titles (click on the title to link to our review):

Five Little Monkeys Jumping on the Bed

Five Little Monkeys Bake a Birthday Cake

Five Little Monkeys Sitting in a Tree

Five Little Monkeys with Nothing to Do

Five Little Monkeys Wash the Car

In print, this book collection has been a favorite of parents, teachers & young readers. In the digital versions, educational Read more …

The Curious Reader by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt

Is your child crazy for a curious little monkey and his friend with the yellow hat? If so, you'll find this new app from Houghton Mifflin Harcourt to be a great way to buy all your favorite titles in digital form for easy access on the go. This is a simple edition of the Curious George series that is more eBook than app - formatted and functioning like an iBook with almost no enhancements. The app includes the first title in the series for free, with additional titles available for in-app purchase. The settings are intuitive and easy to use, including controls for the narration that highlights word-for-word. While perfect for classroom use and bedtime reading, this collection may Read more …

Gorilla Band 3D story book with music - Wasabi Productions by Wasabi Productions Pty Ltd

From Graham Nunn, creator of the Larry Lizard series of apps, another interactive tale with a musical theme swings into young readers hearts. Each player in this 'jungle music school' has a different instrument and despite initial reluctance to practice with their teacher, they develop a sense of both rhythm and teamwork. In the end, they form a cohesive group and play an original tune called "Gorilla Band".

The enhancements in this title are both fun and well-paced for young readers ages 2-6. Nice highlighting is timed with the narration, word-for-word, including sing-along music video extras. Readers can get more into the story by tapping the characters for additional dialog. Read more …

Dear Zoo by Pan Macmillan

Based on the classic 1982 Rod Campbell title, Dear Zoo is an adorable and beautifully enhanced book app that takes the very best of a traditional 'lift-the-flap' title in print and brings it to digital seamlessly. Children will enjoy this story, about a child who writes to the zoo to send a new pet, but each animal is not quite right for different reasons. A fun matching game is also included, letting kids match the animals in the book to the words used to describe them - like "too scary" or "too big". Eventually a perfect pet is sent to the youngster, one that is just right.

This app is well made and intuitive to use, but it does lack some of the settings and features that book app reader Read more …

Curious George and the Firefighters by i Read With by Tribal Nova

Curious George and the Firefighters by TribalNova is a universal app for iOS which features George and the man with the yellow hat on a trip to the firehouse. In this adapted app for iOS, this animated story features three options, a “listen”, “read and talk” and then “theater”. One of the features of the app is iReadWith which is designed to help with language development and help preschoolers learn to read using a shared reading activity which encourages readers to talk and participate using a prompt which encourages questions to help better understand the story as well as demonstrate understanding of the story by being an active versus passive Read more …

Mabell's Zoo - Interactive Counting Book by Brenda Long

Mabel's Zoo is a simple but lovely storybook app that explores familiar animals found in a zoo for the very youngest readers. Simple text, lacking grammatical polish, accompanies each patchwork scene. "Elephant gives rides to the birds", "Monkeys swing from vinces and each other" and "Tangs bring sunshine to the ocean" are typical phrases found in this book app, explaining to young listeners the basics of wildlife. Within the app's 10 pages (no pageguide), children will find the sounds and sights of many zoo animals. This is an app that is fun to explore and share with a young child, especially when teaching about the natural world and animals.

Recommended.

This app has been thoroughly Read more …

Curious George and the Birthday Surprise by i Read With by Tribal Nova

I have to admit, I’m not always a fan of ebooks as I much prefer to hold a printed text in my hand.  There are some apps, however, that use the technology in such an engaging way that I've had to change my mind. Curious George and the Birthday Surprise is one such app. It offers interactive opportunities for both children and adults that make reading the story a different experience from reading just the printed book. 

First, you should know that this app looks and sounds just like a Curious George book. The illustrations and text are taken from the original. With a plain white background, the illustrations and text are easy to see and appreciate. On
each Read more …

Make A Song by Gorilla Band 2 - 3D story book with Music by Wasabi Productions Pty Ltd

Are you looking for an app with stunning 3D graphics and the ability to wow young readers? Well, look no further. The gorillas are back and they're making more music with the inspiration of their natural environment. From lightning to rain and even the fluttering of insects, these young musicians find sounds they can mimic and enhance with their own instruments. This tale begins with Pricilla Gorilla, who is upset when her portable music player has dead batteries. How can she listen to music now? The music teacher has an idea, "Music's always around you, wherever you go. It's the wind in the trees and the flutter and flap. It's the sound of the jungle - there's music in Read more …

One Giggly Gorilla by Wasabi Productions Pty Ltd

This is an adorable sequal to Ten Giggly Gorillas, an animated counting book from Graham Nunn, creator of the Larry Lizard series of book apps. As the app opens, one cute primate swings from the branches of a tree. With each subsequent page, additional gorillas are added, one by one. Readers tap and hold the branch the gorillas are on to catapult them up to the next section of a tall tree. Each gorilla has something unique; from a pirate's hat to a tutu, each animal is different.

The story goes on like this for ten pages, until there are no gorillas left. As the story progresses, the reader will see the page slide down to show a lower part of the same tree with all the gorillas hanging Read more …

Over in the Jungle by Dawn Publications

Over in the Jungle is a beautifully illustrated book app based on the print title published in 2007. Author Marianne Berkes weaves a simple but sweet story about jungle animals over ten pages, counting one-by-one until by all the animal babies have been found. This well-crafted tale, told in rhyme, is delightful and can be read aloud, narrated (with highlighting) or even sung to young listeners.

As lovely as the story is, the illustrations are even better! Beautiful colors depict diverse creatures from monkeys to insects with light interactivity and animation. The jungle comes alive with Jeanette Canyon's original creations. Music is also lovely as an addition to this multi-media app, Read more …

Duck, Dog & Bear Go to Africa by TaleSpring LLC

This is the story of Duck, Dog and Bear traveling in Africa where they meet new animals such as a monkey, elephant and giraffe. The story is 16 pages of single sentences written in rhyme and targeted to children two to four years old. The app is narrated on each page when a button is pushed and illustrations are manipulated by hitting the "tap" button. The app has music, but minimally. Pages can be moved forward or backward by tapping the page arrows, swiping left or right or by choosing from the page selection.

There are two ways to approach this app. The first is to view it as more of an iBook since that medium usually offers fewer features and relies more on the story as a selling Read more …

Children's Book - Monkey & Croc by Jujubee Books

A cute monkey and a less-than-menacing looking crocodile star in this little digital book app for kids age 2-6. It is filled with gorgeous illustrations that tell the story as much as the words. The text of the story is comprised of very simple sentences, making this an ideal book for young children learning to read.

The story is also very cute. Monkey and croc appear to have a lot in common - they both live in the jungle, like to hide and ... they are both hungry. As the monkey heads for some bananas, the reader sees 'Croc' with his eye on the monkey (possibly to eat him for a snack). But after several pages of following the monkey with a hungry look, we find out Croc is also Read more …

Kiwi and Pear's World Adventure by Zephyr Games

Kiwi and Pear's World Adventure is a storybook/game hybrid title under Games. It is an iPhone/iPod title that does expand to 2x on an iPad, although the resolution for the iPad is not ideal but still enjoyable. The book features two little monkeys that travel around the world, seeing all the famous sights, from the Statue of Liberty to the Great Wall.

It is educational and could have been listed under any one of three categories (Games/Books/Education). The storybook is the main feature, and it is full of delightful animations, most of which are triggered by the child touching a picture. The sun on most pages bounces in the sky, the animals move around and much more.

This book is definitely Read more …

Enzo and Rose by Todd Mariani

Enzo and Rose, Two monkeys in clothes is a short story about Enzo (a blue cape wearing boy) and his sister Rose (wearing a polka dot suit). The story has the two kids playing at home unsupervised. The focus is on a list of 'rules' posted on the fridge. In addition to not hitting, teasing or screaming is the curious rule that 'under no circumstances tattletale on your sis'. Enzo questions the 'sloppy' handwriting (suspecting a parent wouldn't have written it so messily), but Rose counters that rules are important because "as everyone knows without rules we'd be just monkeys in clothes."

The story is told in rhyming verse with some of the most interesting illustrations I've seen in an Read more …