Monday, March 30, 2009

68. The Werefox

The Werefox (originally published as Pure Magic) by Elizabeth Coatsworth
Illustrated by Ingrid Fetz

Pages: 73
Ages: 7+
Finished: Mar. 27, 2009
First Published: 1973
Genre: children, paranormal
Rating: 2.5/5

Reason for Reading: Read aloud to my 8yo.

First sentence:


Johnny Dunlap woke and lay on his back in his narrow bed listening.

Comments: Set in a very rural area, a new family moves onto the farm nearest Johnny's place and he becomes friends with the eldest son Giles. Turns out they are French Canadians and Giles looks just like his mother while the two younger children are spitting images of the father. This is because Giles and his mother are Werefoxes, similar to werewolves, only much more gentle creatures. Giles and Johnny are typical boys during the day but at night Giles the fox takes Johnny on his midnight runs with him. Everything comes to a head when a new man moves into the area bringing with him a host of hound dogs and gives a portion of the local men the fever for fox hunting.

Sadly to say this was a rather lacklustre story. The boys adventures as boys were boring, doing chores together, walking home from school. The idea of a werefox was interesting but other than nature descriptions nothing much happened when they ran together at night. The ending with the fox hunt finally brought some action to the story but it was predictable and not altogether very exciting. The 8yo did enjoy it. He would probably give it a bit better rating than I did but he also knows we've read much, much better books than this one. I suggest you give this out of print book a skip.

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