Reynard the Fox

Reynard the Fox

by Selina Hastings, Graham Percy

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
This fox is a charmer. His honeyed tongue has delivered him from many a sticky situation, and his smiling duplicity has tricked many a plump young creature into his jaws. But he is about to get his comeuppance. Ideal for reading aloud, Hastings's intelligent text tells of the Lion King's attempts to bring Reynard to justice. An assortment of animals, elegant in their human finery, parade across the pages hoping for their enemy's downfall. Reynard, however, seems able to thwart them at every turn. Percy's illustrations--with their predominant muted rusts, browns and reds--are perfectly in keeping with the narrative's regal overtones. However, their softness is somewhat at odds with the often gory details of Reynard's ruthlessness--which may be a good thing. And for all the book's beauty and admirable use of language, there is a great deal of biting off of heads, which parents, if not children, may find distressing. Ages 6-up. (May)
School Library Journal - School Library Journal
Gr 2-5-- In this retelling of an old Northern European legend, crafty Reynard indeed manages to ``outfox'' his captors even at the very moment of his imminent execution. This version is based upon the translation from Dutch to English by the early printer, William Caxton, in 1481. Although obviously guilty and unrepentant to the end, Reynard is nonetheless a charismatic antihero, and his escapades should prove diverting reading. All of the characters retain their animalistic natures while serving as representatives of the human condition. To reinforce this, they are clad in elegant garb appropriate to the era. Enhanced by Percy's graceful illustrations in soft pastel tones, Hastings succeeds in recreating a world that is believable and replete with medieval flavor. Readers will enjoy the unfolding of these adventures, and will be challenged to keep ahead of the shrewd fox as he fools everyone and manages to surface safe and victorious. Although a lengthy and demanding read-aloud, this should be a welcome addition to collections in which folklore is heavily used. Reynard is an appropriate companion for Brer Rabbit and Til Eulenspiegel, as well as for Aesop's more closely related stories. --Martha Rosen, Edgewood School, Scarsdale, NY

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Product Details

HarperCollins Publishers
Publication date:
Edition description:
1st U.S. ed
Age Range:
7 - 9 Years

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