What do you get when two former technical consultants for Disney create their own storybook app? A magical place described as "not so far away" in which stories come alive on the iPad.
The land in question is a map in which stories are grouped together by genre--with imagery next to each name so that small children can easily figure out what types of stories await them there including Animal Kingdom, Adventure Island, Fairytale Forest, Fantasy Falls, Classic Grove, Fable Hills, Good Land, Bedtime Bluffs and Picture Point.
The app is downloadable for free from the itunes store and unlimited stories can be downloaded with the purchase of a monthly subscription for $3.99, with the an initial free first month trial. New stories are added every week, and, once downloaded, books can even be read when offline.
Though my 5 1/2 year old son enjoyed reading through and listening to a couple of stories, my three-year-old daughter's favorite part of the app was clicking around the map and watching the different lands react to her touch. My favorite part? Because the app works on a monthly subscription instead of on a story by story basis, I never had to worry that my children were being sold something, which made it really feel like a virtual library. Albeit a library that can fit in a carry-on bag on an airplane with an included librarian to read the stories...and graphics that evoke a fairyland.
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