Developer: The Conspiracy
Price: FREE
Version Reviewed: 1.2
Device Reviewed On: iPad 2

iPhone Integration Rating: ★★★½☆
User Interface Rating: ★★★★½
Re-use Value Rating: ★★★½☆

Overall Rating: ★★★★☆

Too Far is a fine example of just how app technology can turn something as traditional as a novel into an interactive assault on the senses. A nice assault, that is, if such a thing exists. At the price of nothing but the time it takes to download, it’s just the kind of coffee table app that people should soak up with enthusiasm.

Telling the tale of two imaginative six-year-olds, Robbie and Fristeen, Too Far follows the children as they spend a memorable summer exploring the woods behind their homes in remote Alaska. It’s an interesting story, both sad and touching, with more than a hefty dose of imagination thrown in for good measure. Such imagination extends across the app, also. The writing is backed up by 12 original musical tracks, each possible to invoke during the book, as well as separately from within the app. Such creativity expands with an interactive map displaying the various story locations, which sparks the imagination off with a glimpse of what could be. Plus, there’s an album of artwork to partner the text.

This artwork comes from an mid 20th century artist I’ve not heard of before, Eugene Von Bruenchenhein, and offers a variety of unique artwork, each showing the frantic yet hugely imaginative nature of the storyline and the artist’s mind at the time. It’s vibrant yet wild, the ideal accompaniment to a young child’s mind.

Combined, it makes for an entrancing experience. There aren’t any obvious weak points here, with the text and music as strong as the artwork. It’s a fascinating combination, too, highlighting just what can be done creatively through the iPad. Arguably, one could say this is what more ebooks should provide in order to be more appealing than the humble paperback. While the subject matter would make one think that Too Far is for younger readers, it’s most definitely not. Instead, it’s an interesting read for adults.

Posted in: iPad Apps and Games, iPad Books, Reviews

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