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Saturday, January 24, 2015

Coyote Run, by Gaetan Doremus. Enchanted Lion Books, Publishers Group Canada. 2014. $18.50 ages 5 and up

"The Old West.

A chase.

Near capture...escape!

It seems that there is no Enchanted Lion book to be found that isn't worthy of your attention. Coyote Run is the newest in the Stories Without Words series and had me looking back to my childhood love of westerns. It actually had me dreaming about the simplicity of life in the 1950s, free of worry and smitten with western heroes and their dramatic encounters as they worked to save those around them from harm. What did I know about the world beyond my neighborhood at that time. As I remember it now, very little!

This tiny treasure causes 'readers' to think and to smile. It is a tad peculiar as we are observers of a coyote breaking out of jail, only to be pursued by an unusual-looking sheriff. When they finally come to a stalemate, the coyote's attention is drawn to a tiny ladybug. Have we seen her in a previous spread?

Her presence sidetracks the two from their confrontation and completely changes their reaction to the situation at hand. Deciding to be friends rather than enemies, they lay down their weapons and spend a lovely evening together. Others in pursuit have no idea about the events that precipitated a new warmth between the two. So, when the posse arrives, the sheriff and coyote make a run for it. When they appear to have run out of options at the edge of a cliff, you won't believe what happens!

The characters are surprising, the fantasy reassuring, and the hero unexpected but most welcome. This is a tale of friendship and adventure, of pursuit and escape; it entertains and endears its characters to those who will share it.

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