As a fan of both technology and reading, I love finding a great app almost as much as I love finding a great book. Even better is finding the perfect combination of the two: an app related to books or authors. In honor of Teen Tech Week, here are some great examples of apps that will appeal to readers.
Book Tie-In Games
With the skyrocketing popularity of mobile apps, many app designers have started designing apps that are set in the worlds of popular books. These apps are often released to coincide with the debut of a movie based on the book. Check out these games if you think playing through the world of your favorite books sounds like fun.
- Temple Run: Oz: Wizard of Oz fans who are looking forward to seeing Oz The Great and Powerful will enjoy this version of the popular Temple Run games. While the gameplay is similar to that found in the other versions of Temple Run, the entire world is designed to look like Oz and includes functionality specific to the world, such as the ability to fly in a hot air balloon. Available for both Android and iOS devices, fans of Oz will want to take this chance to run down the Yellow Brick Road as Oz himself.
- The Adventures of Tintin: The Game: With great 3D graphics that look a lot like the animation of the recent Tintin movie, this game will immerse you in the world of Tintin. At various points, you play as several different iconic Tintin characters, including his dog Snowy. Versions are available for both Android and iOS devices. And, for big Tintin fans, there is also an interactive version of the book, The Art of the Adventure of Tintin, available for iPad.
Read on Your Device
Reading on mobile devices is hardly a novel idea, with a wide range of eReader apps available, including those for Kindle and Nook users. But if you want to move beyond these standard eReader apps, you may want to check out these apps that take advantage of all of the features of mobile devices to enhance the reading experience.
- Poem Flow: For poetry fans, this app offers a collection of poems curated by the Academy of American Poets. Twenty poems are included in the free version of the app with the option to buy a subscription for access to more poems. In the app, you can read each poem by scrolling through it or you can turn your device to landscape view to watch the poem flow across the screen via an animated display. Read more about it in this YALSAblog App of the Week post.
- Lovelace & Babbage: You may have heard of Ada Lovelace and Charles Babbage, who collaborated on the Analytical Engine, a precursor to modern computers, but have you read about their steampunk adventures in Victorian England? The Lovelace & Babbage app will introduce you to The Thrilling Adventures of Lovelace and Babbage, a webcomic that follows their adventures fighting crime. Is it historically accurate? Definitely not. Is it lots of fun? Yes!
- Versu: Perfect for fans of Choose-Your-Own-Adventure stories, the Versu app puts you in control of the story by allowing you to make decisions for the characters. Select from one of the available stories and pick which character you want to control to put your own stamp on the action. As you move through the plot, you will be offered alternatives that will change the outcome of the story. Currently, there are three stories included with the free download of the app with another story available for purchase, but the creator of the app has promised that more will be available in the future.
- iPoe: Perfect for fans of Edgar Allan Poe, the iPoe apps (which has also been reviewed on the YALSAblog) adds illustrations, animations, sound effects and interactive elements to Poe’s famous tales. There are currently two apps available, each with different content, and right now the first app is free, so it is a great time to check it out!
Find Your Next Read
- YALSA’s Teen Book Finder: Last (but definitely not least), if you find yourself wondering what to read next, look no further than YALSA’s Teen Book Finder. It offers daily hot picks, as well as the option to search by author, title, genre, or which award the book has won. A great tool for finding the perfect book for any mood. Read more about it in this Hub post by Summer Hayes.
Do you use your mobile device for reading? If so, what are your favorite reading apps? Be sure to follow the App of the Week posts on the YALSAblog to find even more fun apps all year round!
— Carli Spina, currently reading Going Vintage by Lindsey Leavitt