I love ebooks for the iPad. I think they’re getting cleverer and cleverer. So I was delighted when I was able to review “Millie and the Lost Key” (the second book about the dog adventurer Millie). While I don’t have kids of my own I have a ton of kids who use my iPad on a regular basis. It’s been the best tool in combatting “long, boring adult things.” Just a couple weeks ago it was a long lunch. There’s also been long graduations, long meetings, and long bus rides. Kids love the iPad because of the tactile experience and, because of this, “Millie and the Lost Key” is an experience kids won’t soon forget.
Millie and the Lost Key is fairly intuitive to use, though I’m glad they had the small startup instructions on how to turn pages. A lot of the pages look like their “real life” counterparts (such as pop up books) so knowing what to do on the screen is easy. The kids I’ve seen use it didn’t struggle at all. The only part I struggled with was knowing when to “scratch off” versus click on something, but soon got the hang of it.
The strength of this app is that there’s always a surprise on the next page and you can’t really tell what might come next. Where a lot of ebooks fail, Millie and the Lost Key succeeds in giving you enough variety in things to do that you’re not bored and give up halfway through. There’s things to push, pull, scratch, click and more. Plus a variety of small mini-games that help the story along.
If you’ve bought enough ebook apps you know that often an ebook is either 1) a great story or 2) a great experience, but very seldom does an ebook app give you both. I have several amazing kids books on my iPad that just make boring apps. There’s nothing visually striking about them and there’s little to click on, move or push around the screen. Thankfully Millie and the Lost Key is not only an exciting app to play with it’s also an adorably cute story.
For the amount of fun this app is, I think it’s one of the most reasonably priced kids ebooks out there. The added value is that it’s got a nice replay incentive if you’ve missed all of the hidden stickers or just want to retry to beat your score on some of the mini-games.
I say buy it, it’s a fun app and is great for the kids in your life who are going to be borrowing your iPad. Plus, you can get the first book “Meet Millie” for free! Click here to find “Millie and the Lost Key” on iTunes: http://bit.ly/qm4ofG