November 10, 2016

Little Fox, Lost

by Nicole Snitselaar
Illustrated by Alicia Padrón
Translated by Erin Woods
Pajama Press
32 pp.
Ages 3-6
September 2016

This is certainly a week for Pajama Press on CanLit for LittleCanadians with Little Fox, Lost being the third book from this publisher that I've reviewed in the past 4 days.  That says a lot about Pajama Press's releases. Except for review copies, which I get from many publishers, I receive no renumeration for any reviews. I just review those books that I believe need to be read and Little Fox, Lost is such a book.  Written by French author Nicole Snitselaar and illustrated by Venezuelan Alicia Padrón, and translated by Pajama Press’s own Erin Woods, Little Fox, Lost is a beautiful, soft book in textual sentiment and physical texture (it has that wonderful cushioned cover) with illustrations evocative of the majesty and solitude of a forest in winter.

After a brilliant snowfall, Mama Fox takes Little Fox out of their den for a walk.  Though cautioned to stay close, Little Fox becomes distracted by his paw prints in the snow while his mother chats away with Mrs. Gray Fox.  It doesn’t take long for Little Fox to realize that he’s gone a little deeper into the forest than he’d planned.  He can’t even retrace his steps which run in every direction.  Fear overcomes Little Fox who starts to cry.  Even when an old owl tries to reassure Little Fox and suggests leading him out of the forest, Little Fox recalls his mother’s wise words:

"If ever you are lost, my child,
Don’t let a stranger guide you.
Be still, and I will search the wild
Until I am beside you." (pg. 20)
From Little Fox, Lost 
by Nicole Snitselaar 
illus. by Alicia Padrón
Even better, Little Fox begins to sing his mother’s rhyme aloud, with the owl’s help, hoping to draw his mother to him.  With the help of some other animals who are also drawn to the singing, Little Fox is reunited with Mama Fox.

From Little Fox, Lost 
by Nicole Snitselaar 
illus. by Alicia Padrón
Little Fox, Lost has a happy ending to a fearful situation for both parent and child, and I suspect that the rhythmic verse in Little Fox, Lost could become a go-to teaching tool for telling a child what to do when lost.  If there is a tune with it, that verse could become widespread in child safety measures.  But, in the meanwhile, read Little Fox, Lost with your children at home and at school to inform them about what to do if lost and reassure them that they will be found.  Because of Alicia Padrón’s stunning artwork, children will lulled into the story and captivated by her delicate creatures and expansive landscapes. There’s a softness and quiet that comforts and envelops the reader in a blanket of safety and support, and even have you looking forward to winter and snow. (I just wish my scanner could depict more accurately the colours within.)

Everything about Little Fox, Lost is sublime, from the lyrical text and its message, to the artwork, the cover, the framing of the words on the page, and the endpapers. Little Fox, Lost is lovely, through and through, and deserving of appreciative readings, over and over.


  1. I stumbled across this and I'm so happy I did. Thank you for such kind words regarding my work! I'm touched. :) This is a lovely book, I hope it reaches many little kids!

    1. I'm so glad you liked the review. I hope I conveyed how special your illustrations are.