Novel Effect is a free, award-winning app that brings your books to life with music, sound effects, and character voices — custom-made to celebrate the tone of each story.

As you read aloud, Novel Effect follows the sound of your voice and responds at just the right moment. Skip pages, pause to talk about the illustrations, or re-read your favorite parts and the app will keep up with you wherever you are in the book. Add an interactive, screen-free dimension to hundreds of kids books you know and love. Perfect for bedtime, in the classroom and library, or wherever story time takes you!

Our growing in-app library is curated for teachers, librarians, kids and families. New titles are added regularly - including classics, bestsellers, new releases, hidden gems, and more. Discover your next great story time read aloud here!

You'll need your own copy of the book you want to read out loud. Some free in-app ebooks are available in the ebook collections.

FIND - Use the search bar or browse the home screen to find your books.
PLAY - Tap the cover and then tap play to start the soundscape.
READ - Set your device aside. When you hear the chime, start reading aloud!

Each soundscape is thoughtfully and professionally designed to capture the spirit and themes of each story. Foster a love of books, promote language development, and increase engagement just by reading aloud as you normally would with Novel Effect in the background. Add a little magic to storytime and bring the focus back to books and moments we spend together.

• A library of 200+ compatible books and poems, with new ones added weekly
• Search to find a specific book title, author, or subject you love
• Explore expertly curated collections of books, poetry, and speeches
• Access your recent, favorite, and downloaded books in the ‘My Library’ tab
• Connect to a Bluetooth speaker or mirror to AppleTV for a more immersive group story time
• Find ebooks that are available in Apple Books or free within the app

Find baby, toddler, and children’s favorites like Chicka Chicka Boom Boom, The Cat in the Hat, The Most Magnificent Thing, Click Clack Moo Cows that Type, Giraffes Can’t Dance, Barnyard Dance, The Day the Crayons Quit, Little Blue Truck, Llama Llama Red Pajama, Be Who You Are, Little Shop of Monsters, The Pout Pout Fish, and many more!

Free in-app ebooks and poetry like The Tale of Peter Rabbit, A Marvelous Mexican Misunderstanding, and Robert Louis Stevenson’s, The Cow are also included.

Carefully crafted collections are updated regularly to help you find books for all ages, grade levels, topics and occasions - such as seasonal favorites, multiculturalism, life events, hobbies, and more.

Novel Effect was featured on Shark Tank, The TODAY Show, and in Forbes, Variety, Lifehacker, and more.

"I think this is cool as cool can be… I love it, I love it!" - Lori Greiner, entrepreneur and investor on ABC’s Shark Tank

"Wait until you see Novel Effect work with our book! This is an app you are going to have to download" - John Colaneri, HGTV's The Cousins, co-author of What Can You Do with a Toolbox?

“I felt like a real audiobook narrator. My five-year-old tried reading a book on her own… and amazingly, the system picked up her little voice and played the effects at all the right moments.” - Michelle Woo, Lifehacker

"Not only did this tool help make poetry come alive for [my student], he asked me if he could try reading... I about fell out of my chair because he never wants to read aloud... and he has asked to go to the library to checkout books that he can read along with the app." - Julie Smith, The Techie Teacher®

Novel Effect is a Parents’ Choice and Mom’s Choice app, and a Webby and Cynopsis Award winner for best interactive experience.

Download for free and become an epic storyteller!

What’s New

Version 2.0.4

• fixed an issue to improve results when using the search feature

We're always looking to improve. If you have feedback or suggestions send an email to

Ratings and Reviews

4.9 out of 5
478 Ratings

478 Ratings

melfurs ,

So much fun!

Updated review (March 2019) ... still loving everything about this app and the new updates make it even easier to use. So glad to see you’ve added favorites, we’ve been waiting for that. My daughter loves to use it and it even follows along with her voice as she’s starting to learn to read on her own. Thanks Novel Effect for helping turn her into a book lover just like her parents!

Updated review... this latest version is way better than the old one, and I loved it before. My two year old can even get the music to play when she says the titles of her favorite books. I can’t wait for her to start reading on her own, Using this app keeps her interested in the stories, even the ones that are well above her reading level. Keep up the good work!

This is such a phenomenal idea! My kid loves it, we're having a blast reading together, and are excited to do it more. The music is all really well done too, that dragon in Harold and the purple crayon really does feel terribly frightening. I'm so glad to see my daughter excited for bedtime stories each night. Thanks for this great app!

Developer Response ,

Thanks so much!! Responses like yours are the reason we exist. Happy Reading!!

AmesIrene ,


We are avid readers and have read over 500 different books to our 2 year old, and we are always looking for screen-free options for her and this fits the bill perfectly! Love the sounds and music and so does she! We can’t wait for more books to be released! Also, a way to favorite or save books in one folder would be nice, so we could save the books we own in one area and reference which books are compatible easily. For now, I’m just going to do it the non-tech way and put all of the books that work with this app in a basket together :)

Developer Response ,

Thanks so much AmesIrene! That is so awesome to hear. More books are on the way! Also, we've added a 'Favorites' feature in our newest version. We would love to have you test it out before it is released publicly if you are interested. If so, please shoot us an email at

Oo7slice ,

One of those magical apps

This is one of those apps that brings a little magic into your life. I was introduced to it by a school librarian when I was visiting my son in kindergarten. She let me read a book to the class using Novel Effect and the kids (and I) loved it.

My son now really likes to try to read the books himself in order to get he sound effects going, and hopes that means re books continue being added to the library.

Looking forward to seeing what comes to the app.


Novel Effect Inc
99.7 MB

Requires iOS 10.0 or later. Compatible with iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch.



Age Rating
Rated 4+
© 2019 Novel Effect Inc


  • Family Sharing

    With Family Sharing set up, up to six family members can use this app.

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