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This is a short, cute book especially for infants and toddlers. But by the time preschool is looming, your kids will probably have outgrown it.
The artwork is simple, but cute. Its style is reminiscent of what you see in the newspaper comics. While the artist kept things simple, he/she added a lot of nice touches and framed scenes using interesting angles.
There is no music in this book, and not a lot by way of sound. What sound effects there are, though, are well-chosen.
This is the story of a boy looking for a nice kiss. On each page he kisses (or considers kissing) a different animal, with varying results. He finally finds a perfect kiss on the last page. It’s not much of a narrative, but works well for toddlers and infants who can’t follow a real narrative anyway.
The narrator does a fine job. He’s enthusiastic without being overly sappy or obnoxious, and he has a pleasant voice. Like the rest of the book, the narration is geared toward younger (pre)readers, so there’s a lot of dramatic inflection and the like, but it’s age-appropriate and never overdone.
Various parts of each image can be touched and a sound corresponding to the touched element will be played, e.g., touch a bee to hear it buzz. It’s pretty bare-bones stuff as far as interactivity goes, but the sound effects are at least well-done. Beyond that there are a few buttons at the bottom of the page for turning pages, replaying the narration for a given page, or returning to the main menu. The buttons are poorly labeled and confusing, but at least the ones for turning pages are in the two bottom corners and are shaped like arrows. Those are the only ones you really need and they are self-explanatory enough.
Fun For Kids
Maddy likes this book, but it’s not one of her favorites. I’d say it goes into the rotation about once every three weeks. Unsurprisingly, as she has aged she has chosen it with less and less frequency (she’s four at the time of this review).
Fun For Adults
This is a good one for adults, I’m afraid, largely because it is so short and innocuous. Let’s be honest, some of the crap that’s out there for kids is nearly unendurable for parents (I’m looking at you Thomas the Train!). I love story time with my daughter, but sometimes, by the time we’ve read three stories (plus usually a lot of talking and commentary) an hour or more will have elapsed by the time I get out of there. And that hour can drag on and on when the wrong stories are chosen. This story isn’t amazing, but it’s not bad, and it’s not long. And sometimes that’s enough.
There’s not a lot to say about this book. Interactivity-wise, it is not much different than a paper-based book. Of course, viewing text and still images on paper is far superior than viewing them on a backlit LCD screen. If you have the choice of reading a paper-based version of this book (if one even exists), do so. It would undoubtedly be a more rewarding experience. But, at least it’s nice to have a book that takes up no space. It’s not the best book in the world, but it’s not bad and it’s not expensive. If you’re just looking for something new and inexpensive for a very young child, I think you’ll probably like this.
*Note: The overall score is not a composite score, but rather my own subjective opinion of the overall quality of the book.
|Fun for Kids|
|Fun for grownups|
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