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Dragon, Robot, Gatorbunny e-book review

Poet Calef Brown, author and illustrator of such books as Flamingos on the Roof and We Go Together (which dropped January 15), transforms his paperback doodle book, Dragon, Robot, Gatorbunny: Pick one. Draw it. Make it funny., into an imaginative and interactive e-book (Chronicle, print book published April 2012; e-book November 2012). The chimerical menagerie of doodles, accompanying prompts, and occasional verse begin with a call from the author to get creative and complete some of the doodles he “forgot” to finish.


Brown morphs geometric shapes, spirals, and googly eyes into a charming combination of creatures — including flutterguys and girls (think butterflies with human faces), snowcrocs (snowmen with crocodile heads), and the title character, the gatorbunny — inviting users to participate in the doodling absurdity, either by adding to Brown’s sketches or composing their own.


The touch-screen color pallet (eraser included) is user-friendly enough, but it seems a significant oversight not to include a way to save each doodle as it’s made. Once you X out of each page, the doodle is lost for good, which could be a tragic loss for young artists. Additionally, the doodle feature promotes independent play, but Brown’s wacky words beg to be read aloud. I recommend for both play and story time.

Available for iPad (requires iOS 5 or later) and iPhone (requires iOS 8.4 or later); $9.99. Recommended for primary and intermediate users.

Shara Hardeson About Shara Hardeson

Shara Hardeson is a former editorial assistant at The Horn Book Guide.

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