March 24, 2018

The Advocate's Toolbox

Nosy Crow’s ‘Little Red Riding Hood’ | Touch and Go

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In an interview, Nosy Crow’s Kate Wilson commented that while working on their first app, the company learned that interactivity and rich dialogue extended the age range of the typical audience for classic stories. Here’s another engaging production from the stellar developer that will have wide appeal.

A classic fairy tale receives an invigorating update in Nosy Crow’s splendid Little Red Riding Hood. ($5.99; PreS-Gr 4). While the narrative remains the same—a little girl must avoid falling into the clutches of the Big Bad Wolf and save her grandparent—the reading experience is amplified by seamless interactivity and nonlinear storytelling.

As Little Red Riding Hood journeys through the woods, readers can choose from multiple routes to get her to Grandma’s house. Each path contains an interactive game or activity that requires readers to assist the girl as she gathers items that ultimately help her send the wolf on his way. Game play is wonderfully immersive; for instance, viewers can blow into the iPad’s microphone to disperse dandelions or tilt the screen to move a spider along its web.

The Big Bad Wolf confronts Little Red Riding Hood (Nosy Crow) Ed Byron

In the independent reading mode, children can manage the length of time the text appears on screen, while in the “Read and Play” option, words are highlighted as they are voiced. Tapping pale blue touch points triggers additional dialogue and information. A pull-down ribbon graphic reveals a map, outlining all the roads to Grandma’s house. Curious readers may skip parts of the story and proceed directly to a particular game or activity by touching its location on the map.

Gorgeous illustrations in vibrant hues, along with a zoom feature that allows readers to explore scenes in detail, add depth and quality. As with previous Nosy Crow productions, the winsome narration by British child actors is thoroughly enchanting. With a touch of modernity, Little Red Riding Hood’s vermilion cape is now a practical hoodie, and the wolf sports a jaunty newsboy cap and snazzy plaid pants that belie his razor-sharp intentions. With broad appeal for a range of ages, this is a must-have production. If you don’t have app collection at your library, Little Red Riding Hood might be the motivation to start one.—Lalitha Nataraj, Escondido Public Library, Escondido, CA

Eds. note: A trailer of Little Red Riding Hood is available for viewing at the Nosy Crow website.

For additional app reviews, visit our Touch and Go webpage.

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Daryl Grabarek About Daryl Grabarek

Daryl Grabarek is the editor of School Library Journal's monthly enewsletter, Curriculum Connections, and its online column Touch and Go. Before coming to SLJ, she held librarian positions in private, school, public, and college libraries. Her dream is to manage a collection on a remote island in the South Pacific.