Saturday, January 4, 2020

Review - A Fox Found a Box

A Fox Found a Box
by Ged Adamson
Date: 2019
Publisher: Schwartz & Wade Books
Reading level: C
Book type: picture book
Pages: 40
Format: e-book
Source: library

When his radio breaks, a little fox finds that the forest is filled with its own rhythm and music--drip drops and chirp chirps--in this picture book that gently introduces the concept of mindfulness.

A little fox is digging for food when--OUCH! What is that?--the fox finds a box! When the fox brings the box home to his animal friends--and turns a funny-looking knob--the box starts to sing, and music fills the forest. Everyone agrees that it feels nice. Day and night, they listen to the box's songs, until, one day, it goes quiet. No matter what they try, they just can't get the box to sing again. The animals stop swishing their tails and flapping their wings.... But, in the silence, the fox hears the drip-drop rhythm of melting icicles and the thump thump of a beaver's tail and comes to realize music is everywhere. The noises of the forest and the animals build into a symphony, until, eventually, everyone joins together in a joyous dance party.

From the author of fan favorite Douglas, You Need Glasses!, here is a wonderful celebration of music--and appreciating the little things that have surrounded you all along.

(synopsis from Goodreads)

This is more of a clunky metaphor and an admonishment to tech-obsessed kids than anything else.

A fox finds a radio while searching the snow for food. The animals figure out how to get the radio to play music, and soon they're listening to it all the time. But one day, the radio won't work anymore. The animals try to get the radio to play music again, but it won't. Then the fox realizes that the forest makes a sort of music of its own. Soon, all the other animals can hear it, too. Then they're happy again.

The metaphor... doesn't quite work. Why would the animals have to discover that the forest makes music? Why didn't they already know that? They had the radio for less than a season, and yet they somehow got totally brainwashed by that one piece of technology? I don't buy it. The metaphor is cute and all, but there's a difference between a creature that's immersed in nature for its whole life and one that's brought up surrounded by smartphones and streaming video services. The latter would be expected to have a problem appreciating nature. The former? Not so much.

The pictures are cute, and the story starts out adorably with the fox flinging himself into the snow headfirst to look for food. But the metaphor is way too clunky, and the story just left me scratching my head.

Premise: 3/5
Meter: n/a
Writing: 3/5
Illustrations: 3/5
Originality: 3/5

Enjoyment: 2/5

Overall: 2.67 out of 5

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