Subscribe to The Horn Book

Mitzi’s World app review

Auryn Inc.’s seek-and-find interactive storybook app Mitzi’s World: Seek and Discover More Than 150 Details in 15 Works of Folk Art (2012), based on Deborah Raffin’s book of the same name, features a selection of “neo-naive” oil paintings by prominent folk-artist Jane Wooster Scott. Spanning the four seasons, each painting depicts a scene inspired by turn of the century and early twentieth century American life. Among the quaint little towns and country sides are tiny people and objects such as cupcakes, tools, bells, kites, boots, and of course, “itsy bitsy Mitzi,” the spotted dog. Search for, find, and touch each item to initiate animation and sound effects.

One of the most practical elements of this app is that it automatically tracks and saves which items you’ve found by displaying them in bold text, even if you navigate away from the application and come back later. If you ever wish to clear your progress, you’ll find a reset button on the homepage. Another great feature is the zoom capability, which allows users to zoom in with incredible clarity on certain sections of the painting to find some of the trickier items.

And if you’re anything like me in the doctor’s waiting room and can’t put the Highlights magazine down until you find the blasted ice cream cone hidden somewhere among the leaves of a palm tree, rest assured: this app comes fully equipped with a hint feature that automatically zooms in on the area of the painting that contains the specific object you’re looking for.

Bright colors, a soothing score, and charming bits of Americana make this app a joy to examine with a fine-toothed comb. The pleasure is in the detail.

Available for iPad (requires iOS 4.3 or later); $2.99. Recommended by primary and intermediate users.

Shara Hardeson About Shara Hardeson

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

Comment Policy:
  1. Be respectful, and do not attack the author, people mentioned in the article, or other commenters. Take on the idea, not the messenger.
  2. Don't use obscene, profane, or vulgar language.
  3. Stay on point. Comments that stray from the topic at hand may be deleted.

We are not able to monitor every comment that comes through (though some comments with links to multiple URLs are held for spam-check moderation by the system). If you see something objectionable, please let us know. Once a comment has been flagged, a staff member will investigate.

We accept clean XHTML in comments, but don't overdo it and please limit the number of links submitted in your comment. For more info, see the full Terms of Use.

Speak Your Mind