Grover is back in Another Monster at the End of This Book … starring Grover and Elmo! In this universal app for iOS, which is the sequel to The Monster at the End of This Book, Elmo and Grover travel together across the screen, bantering about the monster who is either fear-inducing (Grover) or the subject of undying curiosity (Elmo).
Throughout the story Elmo tries to turn the page, and Grover tries to stop him. The app, which is adapted faithfully from the original printed children’s book, takes full advantage of the iPad’s (or other iOS device’s) capabilities, allowing the user to participate in the story.
The app begins with an intro page that allows the child to add his or her name. As is typical of a Sesame Workshop product, the app shows remarkable depth of programming. For example, if the user leaves the app open to the intro page Elmo and Grover continue a varied dialogue about the book, eventually Grover asks Elmo, who has jumped into his arms, “Do you want to get down now?” Elmo and Grover continue to chat on each page after the main action concludes, and will react in a variety of ways to the user’s touch.
Although the app includes a carefully crafted help section at the beginning, it also teaches the user how to play along while the story is being read. When it’s time to turn the virtual page, first the page curls to prompt the reader, then Elmo speaks up saying, “Gee, I wonder what would happen if you touch the arrow.”
Elmo continues to tell the reader how to foil Grover’s plans. Children get to flick paperclips off the book’s edge, remove glue, and break down a block wall until finally both monsters meet “the monster” at the end of the book. Surprise!
The app’s animation is seamless. The developers have also integrated the soundtrack as artfully as in a television show or movie. The soundtrack uses well-placed sounds to accentuate the storyline.
Download Another Monster at the End of This Book … Starring Grover and Elmo! from the App Store for $0.99.
What I liked: Another Monster uses the apps capabilities to enhance, rather than overwhelm, an already charming story.
What I didn’t like: If you close the app midway, it does not save your place. Although the font is very distinctive, it could pose a challenge for developing readers.
To buy or not to buy: At the current sale price of $0.99, Another Monster is a steal. This entertaining title is an essential edition to any pre-schoolers book app library, and a worthy sequel to both its print and iOS predecessors.
- App Name: Another Monster at the End of This Book… starring Grover and Elmo!
- Version Reviewed: 1
- Category: Books
- Developer: Sesame Workshop, Callaway Digital Arts
- Price: $0.99