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War Horse app tramples genre conventions

Egmont UK has launched an immersive, interactive app based on Michael Morpurgo's best-selling children's novel War Horse. It shows very little respect for established genre boundaries.

  • The War Horse app is available in App Store

    The War Horse app is available in App Store

  • The War Horse app is available in App Store

    The War Horse app is available in App Store

First announced at London Book Fair, the app has been created in partnership with Touch Press, creators of the best-selling apps The Elements and The Waste Land, and Illuminations, award-winning producers of performance media.

At the heart of the app is the complete text of the novel, together with an unabridged audiobook reading by the author. Alongside the text a sits a Timeline which tells the real story of the First World War through documents, maps, photographs and film. As in the novel, the war is seen from both Allied and German perspectives, with professionally narrated first-hand quotes and over 200 original photographs to bring you closer to the soldiers’ experience. The content is carefully curated by theme, allowing the reader to learn more about key battles, events and people.

The Insights section presents thirty-four video interviews with historians, experts and the author, which shed light on the inspiration for the book and its historical setting. Fascinating views on horses in war, trench life and the Western Front today are supported by related images, subtitles, video and rotational photography.

There is also an exclusive, 80-minute live filmed Performance of War Horse which completes this rich digital experience. It is performed by Michael Morpurgo and renowned British folk musicians, John Tams and Barry Coope, who wrote the songs for the stage version of War Horse. The performance includes synchronized transcript and song lyrics. The Performance and Insights can also be streamed full screen to AppleTV.

Cally Poplak, MD of Egmont Press and Egmont US said: 'Just as The National Theatre used War Horse to reinvent puppet theatre, we have worked with Touch Press on War Horse to transform our notion of the enhanced ebook. The book is centre stage and so is the spirit of the book:  a storyteller wanting to make accessible, relevant and vivid a period in our history that is increasingly remote for children today'

Michael Morpurgo said: ‘When I wrote my story all those years ago in Devon, I never dreamed that Joey would gallop on like this. First the National Theatre’s amazing production, then a wonderful movie by one of the world’s greatest directors and now an App which truly has the spirit of my original story right at its centre.  I couldn’t be more delighted’.

It is priced at £9.99 and available from the Apple App store. 

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