Kate Read: One Fox, A Counting Book Thriller

Illustrated by the author

Published by Two Hoots, Pan Macmillan, 2019

Every now and then a picture book comes along that ticks all the boxes for storyline entertainment, short word count, gorgeous illustrations and playful ending. One Fox by Kate Read embraces all these elements in a very clever counting book drama.

Beginning with one famished fox who has two sly eyes, we count on to three plump chickens and the inevitable chase that has gone on between these two adversaries for centuries. What makes this picture book remarkable is that the story becomes suspenseful with so few words and is complete by the time you count from one to ten! The illustrations match and enhance the text and, by the end, we are almost sure that the fox will have his way with those plump and now very frantic chickens. But there is a surprise after we see fox’s 10 sharp teeth. I won’t spoil the very satisfying ending, because you will just have to read it….and then you will close the book with a smile.

I can highly recommend this book for children 2-4 years and below are more suggestions for picture books that feature foxes and all the mischief they get themselves into:

Fox’s Socks by Julia Donaldson Illustrated by Axel Scheffler

Hello, Red Fox by Eric Carle

Little Fox in the Forest by Stephanie Graegin

The Tale of Jemima Puddle-Duck
by Beatrix Potter

That is NOT a Good Idea!
by Mo Willems

Hattie and the Fox by Mem Fox Illustrated by Patricia Mullins

The Gingerbread Boy
by Paul Galdone

Fox and Feathers by Narelle Oliver

Fox in Socks by Dr Seuss

Fox and Hen Together
by Beatrice Rodriguez

A Good Day by Kevin Henkes