Vincent the Anteater’s Space Voyage, by El Pudu Studios, is a gentle and enchanting interactive book, about an anteater’s voyage to find out why his favorite treats, the green hairy ants, have been disappearing. He seeks out answers from his mentor, Peter the Armadillo, and with his blessing, decides to go on a quest of his own to find the answer. He builds a ship and launches out into the universe to ask the Cosmic Anteater, rather than buy into his fellow anteater’s superstitions. Vincent, being a rather science minded anteater, has learned from Peter to look at things closely, and uses the magnifying glass to explore things further. Along the way, he has stop overs on nine different planets.
There are so many lessons to be learned on how to live responsibly, and how to use and renew resources. Each planet has a lesson on how to be a responsible citizen, and how to actively problem solve that planet’s dilemma, so that its citizens can live in peace. There are plenty of interactive features on each page, and I really appreciate that the interactivity is part of the lesson being taught. The use of a spy glass showcases the investigative spirit, and fulfilling it helps you move on from planet to planet. For instance on the doggie planet, the animals are too heavy and lethargic from eating sweets, and need to learn to eat in a way that restores energy rather than holds them back. By feeding the pups berries rather than cakes, they are able to move about and play again. On another planet, the warning of manipulating plants and animals in the ecosystem is beautifully portrayed so as if one destabilizes the flow and balance of nature’s diversity that it affects our own health and experiences too.
I love the whole package of this book from its concept to its execution, plus I would love to have that sweater that Vincent wears on his space voyage! I will not spoil the outcome, but I do want to compare this to The Wizard of OZ and Dorothy’s journey. We go so far looking for answers that we do not see what is in front of us or what we need to do.
The art work is original and beautifully done with a richness of textures that you do not usually see in an app. All pages are made from felt sculptures, and the softness and textures of the characters is immediately available to young children as alive. Vincent is an old friend, by the first or second page. Narration is absolutely lovely. My only wish is that you could save progress or page entries…or go to a page on request. Sometimes, especially with the planets, it would be nice to return to where you were rather than start over.
I love this book and am under its spell. I would highly recommend it to others. Its gentle beauty just makes me want to sing with joy, and share its message with others.
About the Author
Jo Booth has been an Occupational Therapist for over 30 years, and currently works in Pediatrics with early intervention. She sees kids newly diagnosed on the spectrum as well as medically fragile kids. She loves to move, explore and play everyday; so that “her kids” grow up to be healthy independent learners.