How I Became a Pirate by Oceanhouse Media, Inc.

How I Became a Pirate is based on the print title of the same name, published in 2003 by Melinda Long with illustrations by Caldecott Honor-winner David Shannon (for the 1998 classic, No David!). With expert word craft, timing and overall storytelling genius, Long weaves a tale about young Jeremy, a boy on a beach trip with his family. Without a word to his distracted parents, Jeremy joins a band of pirates to help them bury treasure. The adventure is wish-fulfillment at its very best for readers of all ages, as the boy teaches the pirates about soccer, learns to sail the stormy seas and even has a pirate pillow fight. It's not surprising that this title received many accolades in Read more …

Treasure Kai and the Seven Cities of Gold by Treasure Bound Books Pty Ltd

In this sequel to Treasure Kai and the Lost Gold of Shark Island, readers are in for a treat! Full of exceptional interactivity that is both story-related and fun, this title surpasses the first book in a way that is rare for a series. The first title was based on a print book with a similar approach to non-linear storytelling, using a series of treasure chests at the bottom of the book (with small toys representing each new page). In print, this title has been a family favorite in our home to this day. But, in digital, this title really took the storytelling up a notch, with a design that feels tailored to the medium of the touch tablet without losing any of the ingenuity of the original Read more …

Treasure Kai and the Lost Gold of Shark Island - Interactive Book App for Kids by Treasure Bound Books Pty Ltd

Kai is a 10 year old boy with a wild imagination and a love of history and treasure. He lives above his parents' treasure shop and the illustrations of this store were so detailed that I could almost imagine being able to play a 'hidden object' game within the page. Tapping on any one of dozens of items elicits high quality sound effects at every turn in the shop's shelves. And we haven't even gotten to the heart of this book - the treasure hunt itself.

This digital book has wonderful interactive sounds and lots of things to touch on every page. One of my son's favorites was the lamp that Kai gets as a birthday gift. It has a shade that looks like a globe and tapping on it turns Read more …

Mr Glue Stories by Chadlington ABC Enterprises Ltd

Mr. Glue Stories presents a visual feast in app-form and is an especially unique and polished digital reading experience for kids 4 and up. It features a choose-your-own adventure style storybook, with choices for the young reader throughout each of four separate stories, all included in-app. This title is also illustrated lavishly in an edgy cartoon-style and is full of great options like recordable narration and coloring pages. You can even add personalized touches like the child's name and gender.

Mr. Glue Stories has a talented team with author Amelia Thorne and illustrator Jose Fragoso. Their kid-pleasing storybooks are worthy of an earlier era in publishing. All four would make Read more …

Alizay, pirate girl by SlimCricket

Get ready for an adventure with Alizay the Pirate Girl! This app by French developer Slim Cricket Books takes children on a treasure hunt with Alizay and her father, Captain Rubber Foot. Together they will set sail to Wind Rose Island where they must complete several activities in order to find the treasure.

This book can be read in either French or English. It has two reading options: Read to Me and Read by Myself. It also has three difficulty levels to choose from. The harder levels will take more skill and time to complete some activities.

My two girls, ages 6 and 11, tested this app with me. The beautiful illustrations, interactive items, and animation right on the “cover” Read more …

Penelope HD by Take 2 Ventures LLC

Penelope the Purple Pirate is a wonderful story for kids about a little girl who doesn't want to take a nap, so while stuck in her room, she dresses up and then imagines she is a pirate out at sea. She wears a purple sash and has friends among the sea animals. She rides on the back of the turtle to find an island and search for treasure. When she 'returns' from her adventure she is ready for her nap (tired from all her travels, perhaps?).

This book features simple narration with a tiny bit of animation, like sparkles around the treasure. The sound effects that were added in the update are really nicely spread out, with something 'hidden' on nearly every page. They are things like splashing Read more …

Finn's Paper Hat HD by Tizio BV

Finn's Paper hat is a charming, original storybook app about a little boy and his newspaper hat. Little Finn has a wild imagination, taking the reader on a trip sailing the seas. Subtle interactivity and animation make the story come alive on every page with unique things to tap and explore. You can tap to create more snow, hear the whale talk or to get Finn's boat to sail across the sea. And on the final page, my favorite, you can drag the sun right out of the sky to reveal a moonlit night, filling it with flickering stars everywhere you tap.

The well-crafted story is told as much through the illustrations as the text, featuring a combination of line drawings and 'newspaper' print. The Read more …

Longlegs and the Pirate With No-Nose by Terra dei Colori - S. C. Sociale a R.L.

Longlegs and the Pirate with No-Nose by developer Terra dei Colori Edizioni, is a storybook app developed for older children featuring a terrible pirate and a monster who wants to right his wrongs.  The story of Rakam, nicknamed No-Nose, comes alive in this interactive app.

Longlegs and the Pirate with No-Nose is a lengthy interactive storybook app appropriate for older children.  It tells the story of Rakam, nicknamed No-Nose, who kidnaps a baby from a princess.  He decides to feed the baby to the alligators that he raises on his magical island called Calabi-Yau.  After being saved by the first mate, the baby's story is spread far and wide by the animals of Read more …

The Pirate Princess ~ 3D Interactive Pop-up Book by StoryToys Entertainment Limited

StoryToys is, as far as I am concerned, the pioneer developer for 3D interactive pop-up books. I’ve seen other developers attempt to rip off some of their ideas to little avail. What I also appreciate about StoryToys is that they are continuing to tweak their format with new ideas and original stories. This app, the latest in their series, is more slick and visually impressive than the previous books, and they are really utilizing the iOS features to create excellent and engaging interactive books.

Strangebeard — The Pirate Princess is an interactive book with 3D pop-up pages full of mini-games which complement the storyline. The story is original and the plot Read more …

I'm Going To Be A Pirate by Two Big Dads Ltd

I'm Going to be a Pirate! is an original storybook about two sisters. Little Lily describes in detail her plans for a pirate adventure ... but her big sister Amanda is not impressed. Amanda says things like, "You can't be a pirate, you get seasick," trying to ruin her little sister's fun. The ever-exuberant Lily responds to each of Amanda's complaints with irrepressible optimism & creativity.

For instance, when Amanda says Lily can't be a pirate because she doesn't like to eat fish, Lily adds that she'll just bring their mom along to make sandwiches. Page by page, the two girls weave a detailed world of pirate pretend play. And in the end Amanda stops complaining, asking if she can be a Read more …

The Day I Became A Pirate - An Interactive Book App for Kids by No Ink, Inc.

By now most of you know I have a thing for pirates! So when I saw this fun app in the App Store a few months back I immediately welcomed our newest mate to the high seas. Cary Snowden wrote The Day I Became A Pirate after a long walk along the shores in Hawaii with his children. Zach Clough does a wonderful job with the illustrations and I just love the way the pirates talk in the app. Very fun! It reached the Top 10 Paid Apps in iTunes and was chosen as a 2012 Award Finalist by Dan Poynter Global eBooks. This will surely be a popular addition for the pirate-loving kid! Here is an excerpt from their website:

The Day I Became A Pirate – An Read more …

Millie & The Lost Key - Millie Was Here, Book 2 by MegaPops LLC

This is the second book in the series about Millie, an ordinary dog with extraordinary capabilities. In book two, Millie is on an adventure, searching for a key that will bring her an endless supply of bacon. This adorable pooch shows up in photographs that are interspersed with lots of fun interactive & animated elements. You can open flaps, pull levers and play with this app much like a traditional pop-up (only better).

The app has great background music, delightful narration and a charming interactive interface that will please adults as much as children. There is also a fun activity with 'hidden' stickers on each page. This makes it a bit less suitable for bedtime reading, though, Read more …

Builda the Re-Bicycler by National Network of Digital Schools Corp

Midlandia is a fictional land where anthropomorphized canines work, live and have all sorts of adventures. One Midlandian, Builda, is the owner of the bicycle factory, supplying everyone with their favorite form of transportation. When a bike breaks, even with something as small as a flat tire, the habit in town is to throw it away and get a new one. But the local dump is beginning to overflow when Builda has a big idea that can make life better for everyone.

This lightly animated and interactive series is full of fun illustrations with lots of detail to show off Midlandia and its inhabitants. Nice hints show kids where to tap, triggering sound effects and cute animations, most of which are Read more …

Scott's Submarine by Charly Playe

Scott's Submarine is a cute digital book about an underwater adventure. The book has a unique graphic style and storyline that can be read at two age levels (2-3 & 4+) which could also translate nicely to reading levels for early readers and those who are more advanced. The book also has settings for multiple languages, including English, Spanish, French & Japanese. This makes it a terrific choice for foreign language learning & practice.

As a digital book, this title really stands out most for its stunning computer graphics. There is a lot to see and to do in this book, too, and while it is not really animated, there are several fun scenes that 'vibrate' to give the Read more …

The Adventures of Peter Pan by Chocolapps SAS

The Adventures of Peter Pan is a nicely abridged retelling of a classic tale. It captures the magic of Neverland, the Lost Boys, pirates and the boy who would never grow up. The highlight of a classic tale like this, when presented by So Ouat!, is the animated storytelling. Characters in the book act out the scenes from each page in short inset videos next to the text. There isn't anything interactive about the illustrations, although tapping the screen does stop and start the narration (which highlights as read).

The only true interactivity present in this book is in the 'extras' - a unique drop down of each page's text that can be explored with several words Read more …

Rolling Pea by KievSeaPirates

Note: Contains (still) Ad for Mazda Cars upon opening app, sponsor website accessible under parental 'gate'.

Rolling Pea, developed by KievSeaPirates and illustrated by Ivan Sulima, is an Eastern European folk tale from the Ukraine. This handsomely illustrated chronicle features a determined little boy named “Rolling Pea” who grows up to have amazing strength and embarks on a quest to rescue his brothers and sisters from a dungeon guarded by the fierce dragon. The story has spectacularly detailed artwork which is combined with subtle and detailed interactivity, fabulous sound effects and original music, all making Read more …

The Pirates! Band of Misfits Movie Storybook by zuuka incorporated

The Pirate Captain is a beloved but a bit beleaguered pirate when he tries to assert his authority. Perhaps he would be not only well-loved but also well-respected if he could just win the "Pirate of the Year" award ... the most coveted award in the world of pirate-dom. His trusty companion, Polly, certainly agrees. But is she really a parrot, or something much more rare? Readers will enjoy an adventure in this movie-themed storybook app, featuring crisp images from the film.

This title is not animated or interactive, providing a simple reading (or listening) experience that will reinforce the movie or prepare young children for what to expect before going to the theater. Fans of the Read more …