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Review: ‘Mrs. Claus Explains It All’

This post concludes a week-long review of holiday apps. If you are thinking about presenting an app as a gift this holiday season, don’t forget to to take a look at our “Top Ten Apps of 2011” list, where you will find suggestions for children, teens, and adults. Our friends at Moms With Apps offer detailed instructions on purchasing apps as gifts, should you need them.

Title: Mrs. Claus Explains It All
Christi Love
Illustrated by: David Wenzel
Published by: Sourcebooks, Inc.
Platform: iOS, purchased through iBooks; Nook
Price: $1.99

Gr 1-3-This iBook presentation of the 2008 Sourcebooks title answers questions asked by children about Santa, the North Pole, and his crew of helpers, elfin and animal. The questions are addressed to Santa’s spouse and range from “What do elves wear?” to “How can Santa get in if I don’t have a chimney?” Mrs. Claus’s answers are quite detailed, and often, surprising. Who knew elves love to accessorize or that Santa has a “tiny device, much like a wireless remote or garage door opener” that “can bypass any alarm system?” Or, that while most reindeer can no longer fly, the North Pole has “a breeding program to keep this rare genetic trait alive.”

On the screen, the book’s spreads are in three-quarter views; they can be seen in whole when reduced in size. A swipe of the finger advances each page in the story. Children can zoom in on the colorful views of “Command Central” and other locales in the story. At the conclusion of the Mrs. Claus there is a scene of Santa flying off in his sleigh as snowflakes fall about him and “Jingle Bells” plays in the background. Outside of this scene, it’s a straightforward look inside the print title. This iBook will satisfy those kids who demand answers to their Santa questions, and probably amuse nonbelievers. For others, this much information might zap some the mystery and magic out of the holiday.Daryl Grabarek, School Library Journal