cover image Argyle Fox

Argyle Fox

Marie Letourneau. Tanglewood (IPS, dist.), $17.99 (32p) ISBN 978-1-939100-09-2

A fox named Argyle (who wears an argyle-patterned scarf knit by his mother) attempts to play outdoors on a windy day in this mild story from Letourneau (The Mice of Bistrot des Sept Frères). Despite his mother’s admonition that playing cards will blow away, Argyle builds a card tower that topples almost immediately. The young fox ignores similar warnings from his animal pals, who try to discourage subsequent ill-fated games—including role-playing as a spider, pirate, and knight. (Readers may note that Argyle’s choices of imaginative activities are less an issue than his flimsy accessories—a paper pirate hat, a cardboard castle, etc.) Letourneau captures Argyle’s frustrations in fresh, cheery illustrations punctuated with her hero’s frustrated outbursts (“Stupid wind!”) and a large, hand- lettered “Woosh” that accompanies each destructive gust. Though short on surprises, Letourneau’s tale offers a gentle reminder of the rewards of perseverance, resourcefulness, and creativity: with only a bit of encouragement from his mother, Argyle hits on a natural windy day activity, repurposing his supplies to create kites for himself and his friends. Ages 4–7. (Mar.)