A beautiful animated storybook. This is what the iPad was made for!
I’ve always loved being read to. Particularly by smooth voiced Irishmen. No, don’t look at me like that. You know not the magic of such a thing until you’ve tried it.
Oh, and throw in some beautiful illustrations and surreal animation for good measure. That’s what Moving Tales has done in this digital retelling of an age old tale, The Pedlar Lady of Gushing Cross.
Gushing? You’re the one who’s gushing at the moment, Edwin. Damn straight I am, and for good reason.
Pedlar Lady is a work of art…
…from the poetic words that swarm onto the page like moths with cloaking devices…
…to the mesmerizingly lilting reading by Mark Doherty.
A simple right-to-left finger swipe takes you, page by page, through the journey of an old woman chasing a dream…well, shambling after a dream at a relaxing, smoothly animated pace which only accentuates the meditative qualities of this app.
Like I said, it’s an old story and has thus been rendered by Moving Tales in a suitably timeless fashion. The acoustic guitar music is both melancholy and uplifting in it’s folksy simplicity. Moving Tales has treated the Pedlar Lady with care and respect…and it shows in every detail.
Okay, I’ll stop gushing for a moment or two about the story, pictures, and animation. Let’s get down to the nitty gritty. Does it work as an iPad app or are we in glorified picture book territory here?
Well, apart from the finger swiping, which can be disabled…
…there is no interactivity to speak of. No little gimmicks hiding within the illustrations. No cute little characters itching to pop their heads around bottle tree to say hello. And the Pedlar Lady is all the stronger for it.
Still, there’s options. You can deactivate the voiceover and read the Pedlar Lady to the kids yourself.
Or, should you miss the odd bedtime story session you can always record yourself reading the book. A nice parenting-by-remote moment.
Actually, it was rather nifty being able to record my daughters’ grandmother reading the story to them. Since she resides in another city it’s always nice to pull out a read-by-nana story every now and then.
As far as options go, that’s about it. After all, the Pedlar Lady is a storytelling app, not a game.
And that’s all it needs to be. Anything more would break the storytelling magic for sure.
So I’m quite happy to marvel at The Pedlar Lady of Gushing Cross in all its simplistic glory. Moving Tales know what they have, and they’ve made it with genius.