This Halloween there's plenty of e-books for all ages that will entertain and engage your kids with great interactive stories for your smartphone and tablet. We take a look at of our favorites and offer up suggestions.
The Witch with No Name
This cleverly interactive story is about a Witch who goes on an adventure to find her name - with your help and that of the witch’s pet bat. You’ll embark on a 3-D adventure (you can tilt your phone/tablet to add depth to the scene), that includes 25 interactive pages, 7 games, and fun tasks (like hunting for a giant’s nose hair) to create a magical potion that will help the witch to find her name. The app uses your phone/tablet’s full capability by tapping into the camera, microphone, compass and gyroscope, and there’s plenty of objects to interact with on the screen while reading along. This fun and engaging story is available for $4.99 in iTunes, Amazon and is recommended for kids 4-10 years old.
Picture Me Trick or Treat
Oceanhouse Media has released an app that puts your child right into the Trick or Treat story. Choose old photos, or capture new ones using your iPhone/iPad camera and place their face in cute costumes. If you feel adventurous, you can integrate multiple photos throughout the book. Once complete, your child can flip through the pages and see them appearing in the story itself. Picture Me Trick or Treat is available in iTunes for $0.99 and is recommended for kids 2-4 years old.
The Legend of Spookley the Square Pumpkin
Based on the book by Joe Troiano, Oceanhouse Media has released an app for the iOS that brings this touching tale to life about Spookley, a pumpkin that was born square not round. The story can be either narrated or your child can read the story themselves, and there’s plenty of interactivity within each scene. The story itself is narrated by Bobby Pickett, known for singing the famous Halloween tune “Monster Mash.” The Legend of Spookley is available on iTunes for $1.99 and is recommended for kids 2-8.
It's The Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown
This classic Peanuts tale comes to life in this read-to-me ebook filled with fun animations and sound effects. You can even bob for apples or play Schroeder's piano. Plus, kids can create their own avatar and dress it in a costume or carve their own pumpkin. You can even put a virtual candle inside to see your jack-o-lantern glow. It's The Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown is available on Google Play for $2.99 or on Amazon for free on Halloween day or regularly $3.99.
Peekaboo Trick or Treat with Ed Emberley
If you have real little ones that you want to get into the Halloween mood, this cute app introduces your tot to the holiday, but in a friendly and not so scary way. The picture book is illustrated by Ed Emberley, who’s been famous for his drawing and picture books for nearly 50 years. In it, over a dozen cartoon creatures come to life, like a dancing ghost or fire-breathing dragon. Kids can see and hear the pronunciation of each character, and enjoy spooky Halloween music to add to the experience. Peekaboo Trick or Treat is available in iTunes for $1.99, and coming soon to the Nook, kindle fire and Android devices. This is good for kids 2-6.
Harry and the Haunted House
Published by Living Books, it’s a Wanderful storybook, about a group of friends that visit a haunted house filled with interactive objects in search of their ball. Words within the story can be tapped on as well to encourage language development, and you can customize the experience based on your child’s reading level – or language. The app is available in iTunes for $4.99, and is expected to also be released for Windows and Android platforms. An upgrade is available to include a French version (the base version supports both English and Spanish), and a Classroom Activities Guide for an additional $2.99. Recommended for kids 6-10.