English and Irish language iPad storybook unveiled

4 Apr 2012

(Left to right) Caroline Smith and Erin Kelly get hands on with the interactive iPad storybook Ó Chrann Go Crann/From Tree to Tree

An English and Irish interactive storybook for iPads has been unveiled in Belfast today from publisher Dragonfly Press. Ó Chrann Go Crann/From Tree to Tree offers a bilingual modern fairytale on tablet PCs.

The publication, aimed at children ages 4-8, is narrated in English and Irish by Caitríona Hastings. Its hand-drawn characters and objects respond to touches and tilts to advance the story.

It has been written and illustrated by Belfast publisher Dragonfly Press and developed by digital agency Origin Partners. Dragonfly Press was established in 2007 and publishes Irish and English-language books. Ó Chrann Go Crann is the publisher’s fifth title and its first for iPads.

“Interactive books give marvellous advantages for authors and readers,” said Dragonfly Press author and illustrator Andrew Whitson.

“Each page of the Ó Chrann Go Crann storybook is full of opportunities for readers to participate in the story – some obvious and some hidden.

“Parents and children can select the language they would prefer to read or choose to have the device read to them as they explore the interactive world,” he said.

Whitson also praised Origin Partners for creating the interactive storybook for the iPad.

“It takes special talent to translate illustrations into interactive artwork that uses all features of the technology without feeling repetitive,” he said.

Origin Partners focuses on developing interactive applications and has worked with Alfa Romeo, Ulster Orchestra and Elevate Sports in the past.

“Andrew and Dragonfly Press have created a timeless story with beautiful illustrations. With this storybook, readers can shape the experience to their own interests,” said Origin Partners technical director, Jerry Staple.

“Maybe your child wants to shake the leaves out of the trees, honk car horns or create music. However, if your family wants to simply enjoy the tale, they can.

“The user is as much a part of the creative team as we are and how they explore the technology will change how they relate to the story. Digital storybooks are a great way to learn because they enhance the story experience presenting more than just showing text on a screen,” he said.

Ó Chrann Go Crann/From Tree to Tree is available through iTunes or as a hard copy from selected bookstores.