Middle Grade on Monday: Maybe a Fox – Alison McGhee & Kathi Appelt

maybe a foxSylvie and Jules.

Jules and Sylvie.

Jules adores her older-by-one-year sister, Sylvie.

Sylvie: beautiful like their mother.
Sylvie: supreme maker of tiny snow families.
Sylvie: faster than fast.

Sylvie: gone.

Into thin air, Sylvie goes missing, and as Jules stumbles in grief, a fox cub is born. A shadow fox, spirit and animal in one. From the minute the cub opens her eyes, she senses something very wrong. Someone—Jules.

Jules: steadfast like their father.
Jules: supreme maker of tiny snow foxes.
Jules: collector of rocks.

Jules: heartbroken.

Who is this Jules? Who is this Sylvie she cries out for? And why does the air still prickle with something unsettled? As that dark unknown grows, the fates of the girl Jules and the fox cub, laced together with wishes and shadowy ties, are about to collide.

This is a small, intimate and beautiful story about love and loss, about mourning and burning wishes, about family and friendship. It is a story full of heart, that pulls on all your emotions and definitely made me well up at times. And even though it is a hard read at times, and not a lot happens, it is and incredibly addicting and quick read as well. One that you can easily get through in a single sitting.

The plot is fine, simple. But it doesn’t need any more. This is about Jules, and how she copes with the loss of her sister… after having seen her mother die only a few years earlier. We also follow Senna, a fox, who has this gut feeling that she has to find Someone, and help Jules. There is also the great plotline of family friend Elk who went to serve in Afghanistan with his best friend, but came home alone. It brings yet another story and version of loss and mourning.

The writing of this is absolutely beautiful. Nothing too complicated (this is a kids book after all), but very well equipped to transfer the emotion in this book and pack a punch. But it is not just a sad story, it is also a hopeful one.

Overall a great read that gave me feelings I’ll carry with me for quite some time still.

4stars

3 thoughts on “Middle Grade on Monday: Maybe a Fox – Alison McGhee & Kathi Appelt

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