Take An Underwater Journey Through A Classic Tale: The Little Mermaid
Posted by Lisa Caplan on: March 1st, 2011, 7.33 pm on appadvice.com – reprinted March 23rd, 2011 in order to feature the Donations to Benefit Apps For Children With Special Needs. Plus a new introduction for SAHGeekmom.com and info on how to win Auryn Ink!
I first met Auryn Apps WAY back, 2 months ago, when I was just starting off my blog. I reviewed the amazing watercolour painting app, Auryn Ink (not the app being reviewed or connected with charity, just backstory) along with a favorite sylus of mine, from Pengo.
It was that review (click her e to read it, but bear in mind it’s, um, vintage…lol) and my app stalking guide (useful still, CLICK HERE TO READ but again let’s call it retro), however amateurish they were, that l turned this blog from a lark for friends, to, well, to whatever it is now, and got me writing for appadvice.com.
Since that time I have come to know one of the people behind AurynApps. After I reviewed their app, we tweeted a bit and she sent me the promo code for Mermaid, etc. I have to confess I consider her a friend now, but I wrote my reviews before we had spoken.
Anyway tomorrow Auryn Ink will be featured (With A GIVEAWAY) on Robin Rhys’s Video Review Show AppAdvice Daily, on Thursday 3/24/11, and now Auryn’s helping to raise funds for a fabulous cause I support wholeheartedly, (see About Me) Apps for Children Children With Special Needs.
Here’s my appadvice.com review:
Little Mermaid – Auryn ($3.99) by Auryn Inc. is a minimally interactive, beautifully animated new e-book for iPad that tells the original Hans Christian Andersen fairy tale, The Little Mermaid, in a way you haven’t seen before. This app is absolute eye candy.
Renowned children’s book illustrator, Lizbeth Zwerger, whose art has decorated the pages of this whimsical undersea story for years, lent her work to this app, and the result is nothing short of spectacular.
The While most books of this sort are aimed at the preschool crowd, Auryn’s The Little Mermaid will delight anyone who enjoys the masterful 19th Century storyteller’s iconic works.
Umesh Shukla, CCO and founder of Auryn Apps, explains that this latest title in their catalogue of iOS books is meant to “capture a wider audience. From 6-8 year olds to a more sophisticated child audience, and even adults who are young at heart.”
The app is interactive in as much as it has a read-aloud feature, and there is a watery interactive surface, much like the many Koi pond apps you can find on the App Store. You can make the water ripple, and have fish follow your fingers on the alternating text and art pages (it is art, you really have to see it). And, that is all the flash you get, which is a lovely change for an App Store kid-lit offering.
Auryn manages to achieve the elusive balance between using technology to maximize the user experience while still allowing room for the content to speak for itself. The Zen-like interface sets off Zwerger’s illustrations perfectly and complements the tranquility that pervades this rendition of the beloved story.
The narrator’s tone is fluid, and as melodious as her merfolk subjects, making the book a pleasure to hear as well as read. The gentle ambient underwater sounds reinforce the serenity making this a perfect bedtime companion for children of all ages.
Since this is the original 150 year-old text it is not trite. There is a basic love story, and just enough suspense to appeal to children of both genders, but don’t expect singing lobsters or a Disney-style happily ever after.
On a deeper level the story is a meditation on the value of the temporal life and the eternal soul. Auryn’s The Little Mermaid will put anyone in a reflective frame of mind to quietly ponder these questions.
It’s also refreshing to read about a princess who saves a man, instead of the other way around. Girls as old as 12 should enjoy this story on many levels.
This is a must-have e-book for any young person, and even an admirable coffee table book to show off your iPad. The only complaint I have is that the story had to end.
When it comes to striking a perfect balance between substance and style in the genre of interactive children’s fiction, Auryn has set a new standard. I hope to see more of this sort of well-balanced brain food soon, and will be watching Auryn apps carefully in anticipation of similar future offerings.
Thanks for reading or re-reading and you will love this book and be helping a great cause, so please check it out!
Happy App Hunting,