In 2003, Publications International Ltd. came out with their "Story Reader" product. Parents needed to buy one "story player", then additional stories were sold separately. Each included a spiral-bound illustrated story and a companion cartridge with audio on ROM like a super-simplified Nintendo cartridge that plugged into the player.
Starting in 2006, Spider-Man appeared in three of those original Story Reader products.
The later "Story Reader 2.0" was a redesign where the book was embedded in the reader, and page-turns were automatically detected to synchronized with the audio.
Now with the falling price of electronics, the third generation of the product is different again.
|Publisher:||Phoenix International Publications, Inc.|
|Contains Component:||Avengers: Galactic Team-Up! (MeReader Book 1)|
|Contains Component:||Spider-Man: The Danger of Doc Ock! (MeReader Book 2)|
|Contains Component:||Guardians of the Galaxy: Alien Invasion! (MeReader Book 3)|
|Contains Component:||Avengers: Dino Danger! (MeReader Book 4)|
|Contains Component:||Avengers: Arctic Attack! (MeReader Book 5)|
|Contains Component:||Guardians of the Galaxy: Meet The Guardians! (MeReader Book 6)|
|Contains Component:||Avengers: Science Fair Surprise! (MeReader Book 7)|
|Contains Component:||Spider-Man: Wanted: Spider-Man! (MeReader Book 8)|
|Adaptation Of:||The Amazing Spider-Man vs. The Green Goblin (Origin Storybook)|
|Adaptation Of:||The Amazing Spider-Man vs. Doctor Octopus (Origin Storybook)|
|Adaptation Of:||The Amazing Spider-Man vs. Mysterio (Origin Storybook)|
The 2015 "MeReaders" are now boxed as a set of eight storybooks, along with a single dedicated MeReader player that has all of the stories pre-loaded. No more cartridges required.
Each book has a dedicated button on the MeReader. Each time you push the button, a recorded voice speaks the words of the story. Push again and it advances to the next page.
The eight books in the pack include four Avengers stories, two Guardians of the Galaxy stories, and two Spider-Man tales.
Each book is stitch-bound hardback, 6½" x 8" with 20 pages. The artwork is entirely taken out of the 8" x 8" softcover picture books from the earlier 2011 Marvel Books (Origin Story) series.
Specifically, the "Wanted: Spider-Man!" is a simplified adaptation of The Amazing Spider-Man vs. Mysterio (Origin Storybook). The text has been massively cut-back, and the story slightly truncated.
The "Danger of Doc Ock!" opens with a couple of pages of artwork (featuring the Enforcers) out of The Amazing Spider-Man vs. The Green Goblin (Origin Storybook) then shifts immediately into a trimmed-down version of The Amazing Spider-Man vs. Doctor Octopus (Origin Storybook).
The books are very high quality, glossy and bright hardbacks. The original source artwork was credited to the anonymous Storybook Art Group, but has stood the test of time in dozens and dozens of adaptations.
The adapted story is clean and professional and ties well to the illustrations.
After five years sitting on a shelf, the electronics worked great first time. The books pack back neatly into the box, which features a plastic carry-handle on the top.
I paid roughly US $20 for this in a discount bin, and I feel like I absolutely got a bargain.
In September 2019 there was a Spider-Man MeReader 8-book pack (ISBN 978-1503747920).
However the Classic Spider-Fan site database ends in 2015 and so I won't be reviewing that product.