Friday, January 2, 2015

Fox's Garden by Princesse Camcam

Ever since I first saw some of the art from this book, I've been wanting to see the whole thing. I love foxes and it looks very magical. In general, I've really liked most of the titles in Enchanted Lion's Stories without words series. As you can see, they're all small, rectangular books and, of course, wordless.

This book tells the story of a fox seeking shelter on a winter's night, but turned away everywhere. When she takes shelter in an abandoned greenhouse, a small boy sees her and sneaks out a basket of food to her and her newly born kits. Later that night, she and her kits leave a magical surprise for the boy in his room before going back to the forest.

Of course, as a wordless book, the main thing is the art. And what lovely, lovely art it is! It reminded me of some of the Russian animation I love, or perhaps Isabelle Arsenault's work. However, it's quite unique. The opening scenes have a theatrical look, as though one is looking through a scenery of trees. As the story progresses, you can see that much of the art is actually paper cut-outs, like the boy and the magical garden. This adds to the fairy tale feeling, as though at any moment paper could come to life and move off the page. The fox is a sharp burst of color against the silent, snowy paper background.

Verdict: This is one of those magical books that may not appeal to a wide section of children, but will become a special treasure for a few. Recommended.

ISBN: 9781592701674; Published 2014 by Enchanted Lion; Review copy provided for Cybils

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