“The illustrator, making her American debut, shows a deft touch with pacing, as the tender story moves from morning to night.”
Even a fox can reciprocate kindness, as this wordless wonder demonstrates.
Readers find themselves plunged into a snowy night, the cold shades of gray relieved only by the red fur of a weary fox looking for shelter.
Ahead, the fox glimpses a cluster of homes, their windows illuminated. Alas, the creature will find no warmth at the home it approaches; instead, an angry man opens his door only to kick up snow at the unwanted fox.
The welcome, however, comes from a wakeful child who spies the fox as it enters the door of the nearby greenhouse. Leaving the glow of his bedroom, the boy dons his own redness, in the form of a cap, scarf, coat and rust-colored boots, and trudges toward the glass building with a basket in his hand. There, amid hothouse blossoms, he encounters the fox sprawled on the floor, nursing four hungry kits. He gently leaves the basket for the family.
Back in his warm room, we see the child surrounded by his stuffed animals, toys, and artwork, including a proud drawing of a bushy-tailed fox. While he sleeps, the entire fox family enters the room to repay his kindness in a simple yet surprising way.
The illustrator, making her American debut, shows a deft touch with pacing, as the tender story moves from morning to night. And like the archetypal fox often depicted in folk literature, Princesse Camcam succeeds with crafty ways. Employing an unusual technique in telling her story, she cuts out her detailed drawings and then carefully photographs them. By doing so, she produces a wintry tale spiced with the warmth of goodwill.