Pillowcapers: A Sleepy Adventure is an animated storybook app developed by Yankee Peddler for the iPad. It comes in both a Read to Me and a Read by Myself option, with the ability to go back and forth between options at any point in the story. There are different settings for the music and sound effects that can be adjusted depending on your needs.
Get a quick look:
Pillowcapers describes the adventures of a little boy named Sam. Sam’s life changes when he receives a red-striped pillowcase for his birthday. “A pillowcase?” he wonders. Well, this isn’t just any ordinary pillowcase; it’s a magical pillowcase that becomes a cape and transforms him into a superhero in the Society of Heroes, Heroines, and Haberdashers (SHHH, for short). His first assignment is to rid the town of some marauding clownbots. As he musters up his courage, he confronts the clownbots and successfully neutralizes them, making the town safe once again.
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The enjoyment factor is definitely there in Pillowcapers. Sam is a very likeable superhero who takes on the role somewhat reluctantly, only to discover he’s pretty good at it. The animations are exceptionally well-done and definitely enhance the telling of the story.
Pillowcapers is written in rhyming verse. The peak age at which children enjoy rhyming is usually around 3-5, so I’m thinking that the rhymes in this app, although reasonably well-written, may be less well received by older boys. Here is an example: “After eating two servings of ice cream and cake, he was handed a gift as he wiped off his face. When opened, he thought it might be a mistake. See, his present this year was a lone pillow case.” On the other hand, the presence of mildly scary clownbots and an enriched vocabulary effectively sets the interest level to children over 5. Obviously, individual readers may respond differently, but it is a factor to consider.
Overall, Pillowcapers is a good attempt at connecting boys with an imaginary world filled with challenges and encounters with wild beasts, in much the same way Maurice Sendak created Max in “Where the Wild Things Are.” Three words I would use to describe Sam are brave, adventurous, and valiant. His story is one that is worthy of being told.
Pillowcapers: A Sleepy Adventure is availabe for download via the iTunes App Store - iPad/iPad Mini/iPad Air
Launch Price: $1.99/£1.49/€1.79 - RRP - $2.99/£1.99/€2.69
At the time of this review, Pillowcapers includes no in-app purchases, no ads, and no links to social media. Parents can be confident that their child’s privacy is protected when using this app.
Review by Julie Peterson, a speech/language pathologist (SLP) currently working in a school setting, serving children with special needs ages 6-14.
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Disclosure: This review was move up the waiting list priority-services. All opinions expressed are purely that of the author.