These seven apps are books that are more than books – they are currently called enhanced eBooks. What is an enhanced book? You’ll find photos, maps, video and each are an invitation for you to take an active role in listening, reading and choosing your content. If you want to dip your toes into this new and exciting world of reading, here’s a few suggestions. (I originally wrote this article back in January and updated it in July to add Bats! Furry Fliers of the Night.)
Here are a few suggestions to get you started.
The Queen Mother of all eBooks is Al Gore’s, Our Choice. This app, priced at $4.99, is a bargain. This app is the winner of the 2011 Apple Design Award. Some eBooks are apps and some are not. Creating it as an app does allow for amazing features. Examples of these features are in text audio (Al’s voice) and a world icon that takes you to a map showing you the exact location of the subject of the photo. The most gee-whiz feature of this book is that you can blow into the microphone and make a wind turbine spin. Reviewers on iTunes gave this book four and one-half stars. There is also an iPhone version.
Another earth related, full-featured book is Here on Earth. Another app, this one priced at $11.99. It contains the full content of the book and a guide that includes video from the author, chapter summaries, themes, and the ability to engage in a little social networking. I haven’t tried this feature yet, but I believe you can highlight text as you read – a must have feature for students. Reviewers on iTunes gave this book five stars. There is a lite version you may want to test.
Jacqueline Kennedy, the enhanced edition offers the full text of the book along with video, audio and photos. Priced at $19.99, it is available through iTunes and has an average rating of three and one-half stars. For fans of the Kennedy’s, this is a must-have book. Reviewers on iTunes gave this book four and one-half stars.
Switching gears from science to children’s literature, the app, The Monster at the End of this Book… Starring Grover! is a complete delight. Your child (or maybe you) will have hours of delight breaking through Grover’s barriers to completing the book. Reviewers on iTunes gave this book four and one-half stars.
The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore is another example of an exciting interactive book. Priced at $4.99, this app is another must-have. Reviewers on iTunes gave this book four and one-half stars.
Bats! Furry Fliers of the Night delves into the wonderful world of bats. At $2.99 it is a steal. It is educational, interactive and just plain fun. I like the last chapter that allows me to move my iPad around and fly like a bat. This app has been selected by the Memphis Zoo for their Animals of the Night exhibit.
This is just a sample of how the advances in technology have made reading even more enjoyable. You can also see my reviews of Leonardo Da Vinci: Anatomy, Golden Gate Bridge and Sonnets by William Shakespeare.