Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Three Fox Fables

Three Fox Fables
Paul Galdone ~ Seabury Press, 1971


My son will tell you he is afraid of only two things, sharks and storms... but seeing as he is a friend of the fowl, his nemesis in children's books is usually the fox. After all, the wylie bad boy steals chickens or kidnaps geese... almost always acts shady, threatening pigs and trying to outsmart everyone with his sly charm. Simply said, my boy HATES foxes, or at least the sort of foxes that end up in children's books. The only one he will embrace as a hero is Dahl's The Fantastic Mr. Fox, but we can't let the reputation of an entire animal race depend one fictional character, can we? Sadly, the only reason he tolerates this one at all is because two of these three fox tales based on Aesop's Fables contain birds; a stork and a crow to be precise.

We begin with the story of the sour grapes (of course each ends with a moral)...

It is easy to scorn what you can not get.

... then onto the stork...

Tricksters can not complain when they in turn are tricked.

... and finally the crow.

Never trust a flatterer.

Here the fox wins some and loses some, as it is in real life with most of our endeavors as non-fox creatures. The Aesop stories have always been some of my favorites and although the fox is mildly sinister with his snake-like eyes and sleazy grin, he will endear after a page or two. One can't hoodwink and bamboozle all the time without winning a few admirers. We all have a little of the fox in us every now and again.

Also by:
Anatole
Hare and the Tortoise

5 comments:

Lise said...

You probably know it already, but just in case...another one you might enjoy is "The Hungry Fox and the Foxy Duck," also by Paul Galdone. My kids ask for it over and over and over.

Vivi said...

That sly fox smile is classic!

Michael said...

surely you know about this, but just in case you missed it: http://www.rushmoreacademy.com/2009/07/23/usa-today-exclusive-first-look-of-fantastic-mr-fox

Scribbler said...

Michael... oh god no i didn't know it.. i am literally having a heart attack right now... OH MY GOD HOW MARVELOUS!

anne said...

I loved "Three Fox Fables" when I was a kid, but had more or less forgotten it until your post here. (I say "more or less" because when I see books of fables, I have a sort of subconscious thought of, "that's not right ... I need the one with the fox.")

So once I saw this entry, I had to have the book for my 2.5 year old. Thanks to Better World Books, it's in our hands, and my son loves it. He even made the comment that the fox is handsome, and I do think this fox is really rather charming (if a trickster), especially compared to the treatment foxes and wolves usually get.

Thanks for reminding me of this one (and introducing me and reintroducing me to several others!). This is one of those blogs that ends up costing me money, but it's great.

Now off to find the book Lise suggested...

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