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The Nook

by T Akery | December 19th, 2011 | Product reviews

The Nook is a handheld book reader device that offers a lot of different features. Since this site is about kids, this review is for the applications that kids would find interesting. However, it is not something that your kids should play with unsupervised unless they are mature and responsible enough to handle electronic equipment.

The best feature of the Nook is the color storybooks that you can buy from Barnes & Noble. Some of these colorful storybooks such as Go Dog Go and many of the Dr. Seuss books have a feature that not only reads the book but turns the pages as well. The stories are in vivid colors, provide some animation, and in some cases, include games that the children can play while reading the book. In addition, the voices for these books are also well spoken and change depending on the character.

Once your child picks a book, it takes a minute to load. From there, you can choose “Autoplay,” which turns the pages as well as reads the book. You can also choose “Read to Me.” With this feature, your child has to turn the pages and the book reads whatever page it is on. Finally, you can choose “Read it Myself'” which lets your child read at whatever pace they are at.

Another nice feature available is the shelves. This allows you to separate your books from your children’s books. You simply create a new shelf for your child and add the books.

There are a couple of things to think about when using the Nook as a reading device. The first is that it is not kid-proof. Meaning that it won’t survive a drop or immersion in liquid substances.

The screen is a touchscreen. So, dirty fingers should be washed before handling. Otherwise, you will find yourself cleaning the screen more often than you would like. Also, some of the touch features are less responsive if the screen is dirty.

The last thing is that the storybooks themselves can be pricier than the regular books. Depending on the book, they can go anywhere from ten dollars and up. Plus, you have to download them directly from the Nook site.

Don’t expect these books to work on the Kindle though. There are some major differences between this and the Kindle when it comes to storybooks for kids.

The Nook has plenty of books to offer to kids. The animation and voices will quickly draw kids into the world of reading which they will find very entertaining. The biggest flaw is that the Nook doesn’t have any of the features that protect it from the rough handling of kids.

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