Total Pageviews

Friday, September 29, 2017

THE Big Bad Fox, written and illustrated by Benjamin Renner. English translation by Joe Johnson. First Second, Roaring Brook Press, Macmillan. Raincoast. 2017. $22.99 ages 8 and up

"There's no use begging!
I'm too cruel!
You have something stuck
in your teeth.
Oh dang, that must be a
piece of last night's turnip.
There. Is that better?
Yes, it's gone.
So, let's start over!

I read this once, and then promptly read it all over again! Fox is quite the appealing and obnoxious character. He is intent on stealing chickens. His favorite haunt is the henhouse. Never successful, the pig provides a turnip with every failure. Fox is so HUNGRY!

Even the chickens aren't scared of him, and treat him with disdain. Fed up, he turns to Wolf for advice. Perhaps the two can steal some eggs and hatch their own chicks. This idea comes with a BIG problem. When the chicks finally do hatch, they assume that Fox is their mother. No matter how hard he tries to convince them they should be very afraid, they refuse to heed his warnings. Despite his actions and motive, it is very difficult to dislike Fox. He is so inept, it's hard not to feel for him.

Benjamin Renner has created a graphic novel filled with slapstick comedy that will have readers laughing out loud (as I did) and shouting to share it with friends and classmates. This book will make its way from desk to desk, and then back again. Done in watercolors, and using spot illustrations and clever dialogue throughout, it is smart, energetic, and downright enjoyable start to finish. Expressive at every turn, there is no doubt about the emotions felt and the feelings shared. Fox loves the chicks, Wolf wants his dinner, Mama Hen wants her babies back ... it is a comedy of errors, love and full-out action. A host of terrific characters, spot-on humor and a story that just doesn't stop is sure to make this a lasting read at home and in classrooms.


No comments:

Post a Comment