Fox & Rabbit (Fox & Rabbit #1)

Beth Ferry, illus. by Gergely Dudás. Amulet, $12.99 (96p) ISBN 978-1-4197-4077-0
The dynamic first in a graphic novel series ideal for early readers transitioning to chapter books, Ferry’s five interconnected stories feature the daily adventures of two affable anthropomorphized animal friends, Fox and Rabbit. In the first story, persistence and support win Rabbit a prize at the fair that ushers the friends toward their next adventure: the shore. There, Rabbit most overcome a big fear (“everything in the ocean scares me”) before the characters visit an island and collaborate on a garden and a lemonade stand. In moments of anxiety and irritation—recognizable situations that are relatable to the intended audience—Fox and Rabbit sometimes respond with annoyance (“I didn’t really see a crab. Stop copying me,” Fox, cross, says as the two point out creatures in the clouds). Still, their relationship models reciprocal patience and respect, and moments of tension serve to highlight the duo’s honest, constant companionability: Asked how Fox knew that Rabbit would like the ocean, Fox responds with an affectionate “Because I know you.” Dudas’s expressive, brightly colored illustrations are a seamless fit for this perceptive, character-driven volume about the power of true friendship. Final art not seen by PW. Ages 6–9. (Apr.)
Reviewed on : 04/15/2020
Release date: 04/01/2020
Genre: Children's
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