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Mabel & Lulu : The Real Life Adventures - An Interactive Children's Book fo...

January 31, 2011

By: Carisa Kluver

The Digital Media Diet

"Mabel, LuLu, adventures right on que" sings this book as you open it. It's VERY catchy, like get-stuck in your head catchy. My son has been humming it all day. Two very cute dogs, Mabel & LuLu, are the main characters in these two stories, along with their 'mom' Beth-Anne. 

I say she's the mom because these dogs are definitely the type of pets that are people, even in real life I suspect. That's because Beth-Anne is the name of the developer and it's clear from reading her website that she lives, loves and maybe even daydreams story adventures about her two pups. I'm a cat person by nature, even a bit afraid of dogs sometimes, but I LOVED these two stories. They will appeal not only to children, but to adults who love their pets like children.

Both stories were funny and touching, and filled with colorful cartoonish illustrations that my son & I both liked a lot. Mabel Has to Go! was my favorite, though. In this story the dogs are in the car waiting for their owner to finish an errand, but Mabel has to pee. Being a clever dog, she decides to pee in a cup in the cup holder of the car. She becoms a super-hero first, covering herself with her cape while she pees daintily. When Beth-Anne returns, she is as proud as can be of her pet's thoughtfulness.

The other story, LuLu goes on Vacation, features LuLu's desire to chase birds (which is why she has to go on vacation with her owner, rather than stay home and tear up the house). We loved this story too, especially the very cool retro clock that goes crazy if tapped, popping off all the little balls that are in place of the clock's numbers. The bird in these stories is also very funny, teasing LuLu when tapped. A cute animated scene usually follows where the bird imagines LuLu doing all sorts of silly things, like wearing a tutu or paddling a canoe.

For an interactive book, this one is really packed.  There are so many interesting (and plot related) interactions in this book that it's hard to describe even a fraction of them. Yet my son didn't tap everywhere crazily to get the book to 'do' stuff. He was enjoying the story so much, that he stayed focused on the interactions that seemed plot related, which is wonderful for it's educational value. Her website says there are over 100 "discoverable touch-based animations" and I am sure there are. I'm just grateful not to have to count them all, since there are 3-5 per page!. This means this is NOT a bedtime book. But it's two books that could each easily be worth the purchase price, even if sold separately.

After my son went to bed one night, I found myself playing with this book and I realized that if you have an iPad but no kids, this is a fun book to try. You can say it's for your nieces & nephews, but I'll know the truth. And if you are a pet lover, not only is the story great, but a portion of proceeds from all Mabel & Lulu apps and products are donated to "The Mabel & Lulu Spay and Neuter Fund."

Overall these are TWO terrific stories and a delightful read for both kids and adults. Since the stories are also really funny for adults, sharing these stories with a child is especially enjoyable. The app is well made, stable and a great choice for times when you need your child to be occupied for quite awhile. But beware, that song is very catchy!

[This is a republished review from 1/12/2011 - It reflects very quick changes made by the developer to improve the animations, page turning and overall stability.  It was good before, but now it is truly a 5 star book app!]


All reviews are of the app, not the platform/device. Based originally on iPad versions. Minor technical details may vary.


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Mabel & Lulu : The Real Life Adventures - An Interactive Chi...

January 31, 2011

By: Carisa Kluver

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Beth-Anne Quinn

Apphaus Design Inc

Length (time):
20 - 30 Minutes

Based on non-digital book: No

Allows Own Narration:

Uses Motion: No

Age: 3 - 10 +

English •

Length (pages):
29 Pages


Story Synopsis - Mabel & Lulu : The Real Life Adventures - An Interactive Children's Book for iPad

Two Stories, Mabel has to go! (14 pages) and Lulu goes on vacation (15 pages) are featured in this VERY interactive storybook. 

In "Lulu goes on Vacation," little LuLu goes on a business trip with her owner and runs after a bird in as series of fun mis-adventures, like taking off across the tarmac after that crazy little bird (who seems to taunt poor LuLu whenever given half a chance). 

In "Mabel has to go!," Mabel becomes a super-hero when trying to figure out what to do when trapped in the car and needing to pee.  She neatly pees in a cup, which Beth-Anne dumps unceremoniously unto the ground as she drives away.



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Orientation: Landscape

Format: Universal


Read to Me, Help Me Discover, Return to Main Menu

App Release Date:


Size: 90.5 MB

Version: 1.2

Lite Version Available: No



Mabel & Lulu : The Real Life Adventures - An Interactive Children's Book for iPad

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★★★CHOSEN NEW & NOTEWORTHY BY APPLE!! & FEATURED IN WHAT'S HOT!!★★★ ★"The characters in this book- Mabel, Lulu and the bird-are true stars!...I found them adorable!" bestappsforkids.com...

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