Fox: A Circle of Life Story

Bloomsbury. Nov. 2021. 48p. Tr $18.99. ISBN 9781547606924.
PreS-Gr 4–This sensitive subject of the circle of life starts sweetly, with the fox mother’s life and the joys and responsibilities of raising her young, then turns its focus on her sudden violent death, decomposition, and her contribution to nature. A well-written text along with the attractive art will fill a needed subject area, and it is an admirable teaching tool. However, preschoolers, attracted by the appearance of material, may not be ready for this book without first sharing it with an adult. The mother fox is hit by a car, and subsequently picked apart by magpies, with her flesh in their beaks, while beetles lay their eggs in her corpse. Yet, once explained, the material is accessible to preschoolers, because the beginning has simple text and illustrations that match the action. Older children will find a fuller description at the end.
VERDICT An admirable book, beautifully presented, and meant to be shared intentionally and carefully with its audience.

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