Fox

Overview

Against the rhythmic background of turning seasons, a little fox learns that there is a time for everything. The rain, the clouds, the days all come and go as the little fox, guided by his wise and loving parents, learns to hunt on his own and bury his food, cover his trail and run like the wind. Now he is ready to go out on his own.

As depicted by an award-winning pair, the gentle story of the rearing of a baby fox, together with sensuous illustrations, takes readers on a ...

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Overview

Against the rhythmic background of turning seasons, a little fox learns that there is a time for everything. The rain, the clouds, the days all come and go as the little fox, guided by his wise and loving parents, learns to hunt on his own and bury his food, cover his trail and run like the wind. Now he is ready to go out on his own.

As depicted by an award-winning pair, the gentle story of the rearing of a baby fox, together with sensuous illustrations, takes readers on a journey deep into the woods to tell a tale that all will recognize - that of growing up and moving out.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"Hallensleben's lush, brushy landscapes of sunny greens and moonlit blues, his coppery, winsome fox pup and Banks's wise, spare lines combine for a package sure to gratify preschoolers and caregivers alike." —Starred, Kirkus Reviews

"Van Gogh-like sweeps of color indicate tall grasses, while splotches of paint deftly reveal the changing hues of leaves and sky. The endpapers show a silvery landscape bathed in moonlight. This picture book is a tender tribute to family." -Starred, School Library Journal

"So often children hear "Not yet." This rich visual landscape helps readers feel that waiting can be a fulfilling experience." -The Chicago Tribune

"Frequent collaborators Banks and Hallensleben compose an appealing, idealized story of a young fox eager for independence." —Publishers Weekly

"Illustrated with Hallensleben's rich, thickly brushed scenes of the nurturing fox family exploring fields and woods, Banks' gentle story sends a message that independence, whether for a fox or a child, is as natural and inevitable as the turning of the seasons." —Booklist

"Lush. Another lyrical Banks-Hallensleben picture book with a strong parent-child connection, perfect for sharing at bedtime."—The Horn Book

"Tender. The blend of cozy safety and movement toward autonomy will speak to youngsters walking that line themselves." —The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books

Publishers Weekly

Frequent collaborators Banks and Hallensleben compose an appealing, idealized story of a young fox eager for independence. As the seasons shift, the kit's watchful parents teach him how to survive in the wild. Although this is a forest tale, anthropomorphism creeps in. The fox is an only offspring, not one of a litter, and his parents instruct him according to traditional gender roles: "The little fox is hungry./ His mama shows him how to find blackberries./ His father shows him how to catch rodents and birds." (The spread shows a blackberry bush; readers never see the foxes killing or eating animals.) Each time the kit learns something new, he asks, "Am I ready?" and his parents reply, "Not yet" or "Soon." These questions lend suspense, yet the narrative avoids threats. When the fox hears baying hounds, his knowing father calls him "deeper into the forest,/ far from danger," and readers sense that the woods may be more hazardous than the book demonstrates. This tidy wilderness portrait is nonetheless seductive: Hallensleben handles outdoor scenes with finesse, and his signature scuffled layers of brushwork mesh with Banks's evocative prose. The foxes' flame-orange coats, described as "the color of burnished leaves," complement mossy greens and sky blues. In beautiful pictures and prose, Banks and Hallensleben provide a safe story, maintaining the illusion that the "little fox" can be cuddly and self-sufficient. Ages 3-6. (Mar.)

Copyright 2007 Reed Business Information
Children's Literature - Claudia Mills
The renowned picture book team of Banks and Hallensleben (And If the Moon Could Talk, The Night Worker, The Great Blue House) here present a touching and lyrical evocation of a child's gradual maturing into independence. A baby fox is born in the spring "among the roots of a great oak tree in a brown earthen den." At first he is content with cuddling and suckling, but as "the buds start to show on the sprouting vines," the little fox begins to yearn to explore the wider world. "‘No, fox, no,' says his mother. ‘You're not ready,' says his father. ‘When will I be ready?' asks the little fox." Despite his persistent inquiries about his readiness, his wise parents know that he must first learn how to find blackberries, catch rodents and birds, hide from enemies, store food for the winter, and "run like the wind." Then, at last, the no-longer-little fox knows that he is ready, and his parents know, too. Banks's text is poetry, and Hallensleben's paintings invite the reader to linger on each page to savor its sheer beauty. While the primary audience for the book is picture-book readers and their families, parents of graduating high school seniors may well have tears in their eyes on the next-to-last page: "‘Now I'm ready,' [Fox] says. ‘Go, fox, go,' says his mother."
School Library Journal

PreS-Gr 1
Born on a spring day, a baby fox is taught the necessary survival skills by his patient parents. The kit is eager to explore the world on his own and asks from time to time, "Am I ready?" "No, fox, no," is the reply. In the fall, a more competent creature doesn't ask, but states, "Now I'm ready," and his mother responds, "Go, fox, go." The lyrical text reads easily, and one slightly changed sentence is repeated throughout: in the spring, "And the rain comes and goes"; at night, "And the stars come and go"; and in the fall, "And the days come and go." Rich, saturated colors fill the spreads with the seasons' deep hues as they depict the young animal's progress toward independence. Van Gogh-like sweeps of color indicate tall grasses, while splotches of paint deftly reveal the changing hues of leaves and sky. The endpapers show a silvery landscape bathed in moonlight. This picture book is a tender tribute to family.
—Maryann H. OwenCopyright 2006 Reed Business Information.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780374399672
  • Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux
  • Publication date: 2/20/2007
  • Edition description: First Edition
  • Pages: 40
  • Sales rank: 651,297
  • Age range: 3 - 6 Years
  • Product dimensions: 10.34 (w) x 10.24 (h) x 0.39 (d)

Meet the Author

Author Kate Banks and illustrator Georg Hallensleben have collaborated on several books, including And If the Moon Could Talk, winner of the Boston Globe–Horn Book Award, The Cat Who Walked Across France, Baboon, Close Your Eyes, and The Night Worker, winner of the Charlotte Zolotow Award. Banks lives in the South of France with her husband and two sons. Hallensleben lives in Paris.

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