Illustrations by Jon Klassen
Category: 9-12 Fiction
Published: February 2016
Synopsis: (Goodreads) Pax was only a kit when his family was killed, and “his boy” Peter rescued him from abandonment and certain death. Now the war front approaches, and when Peter’s father enlists, Peter has to move in with his grandpa. Far worse than being forced to leave home is the fact that Pax can’t go. Peter listens to his stern father—as he usually does—and throws Pax’s favorite toy soldier into the woods. When the fox runs to retrieve it, Peter and his dad get back in the car and leave him there—alone. But before Peter makes it through even one night under his grandfather’s roof, regret and duty spur him to action; he packs for a trek to get his best friend back and sneaks into the night. This is the story of Peter, Pax, and their independent struggles to return to one another against all odds.
I had heard that it was good so naturally I was a little skeptical but I can honestly say it’s true. I read it within two days and as of right now am sleep deprived because I was up late last night finishing it.
It is a story told from both Peter (the boy) and Pax’s (the fox) point of view. It starts off by Peter having to let Pax go because his father is making him. A boy with a lot of losses already and this is his best friend in the whole world. Pax being a fox never knowing anything outside of the boys protection. So that is sad in it self.
The whole story is of these two beings not only finding themselves but trying to find each other. You have the war as a backdrop. They don’t talk about which one but it’s kind of implied it’s WW2. I liked the fact that you get to hear about the war and learn of its conquences to both humans and the animal life.
Both Pax and Peter are great character with real flaws that they can overcome with hard work and perseverance and love. They meet different people/animals along the way that help them do this.
This is a beautiful moving book and I cried at the end. Not from sadness but from happiness and from feeling the love come out of the book. I’ve never been so emotional with a 9-12 book that wasn’t Harry Potter. I am really looking forward to the book when it officially comes out and I get to see the pictures by Jon. They were not in the ARC.
So I would recommend this for any boy or girl or adult of that age group. There are great messages and it’s a quick read. Plus there is pictures…everyone loves pictures.