Loud Crow‘s PopOut! The Tale of Benjamin Bunny is a worthy follow-up to the developer’s well-received take on Peter Rabbit. Peter and Benjamin Bunny are cousins — the blue-coated rabbit even makes an appearance in this tale — so Peter’s fans will want to meet Benjamin as well.
This inventive universal book app retells Beatrice Potter’s classic story for the iPad, iPhone, and iPod touch. As the story of Benjamin unfolds, readers can tug virtual tabs, grab onions that leap from the screen, yet the author’s original illustrations and typeface are preserved.
Any reader who has read a pop-up, or other paper-based interactive kids book will know intuitively how to use this app. There are arrows that mimic the paper flags one might find in a traditional pop-up book which indicate the book’s interactive hot spots.
The narrator’s soothing British accent adds a pleasing dimension to the tale of one cousin helping another cousin recover his clothes from Mr. McGregor’s garden. The background music fits the story perfectly, as do the temperate sounds of the animals one can elicit with a tap of the finger. The page turns are smooth, and the reader can turn the page whenever she likes, which will please readers who like to flip through to find their favorite parts of the story.
Because the UI remains so true to the original story the iOS version never overwhelms the print version’s subtle details.
Thanks to the read-to-me option, younger readers can explore the app on their own, even if they have yet to learn how to read, plus anyone choosing the read-to-self option can enable the narration by tapping the circular arrow at the end of each page of text.
Download PopOut! The Tale of Benjamin Bunny from the App Store.
What I liked: The PopOut! series offers some of the most innovative interactivity available in iOS apps today. Choosing read-to-self doesn’t disable any of the book’s interactivity.
What I didn’t like: I liked everything about this app. It puts a classic story in a new context.
To buy or not to buy: Fans of Beatrix Potter, creative kids e-books, or any family with young children will enjoy this app.
- App Name: PopOut! The Tale of Benjamin Bunny
- Version Reviewed: 1.0
- Category: Books
- Developer: Loud Crow Interactive
- Price: $4.99