Cartoonist Twohy delivers lackluster laughs in this tale of a clever duck and not-too-bright fox.
The story opens with confusingly scriptlike narration (without the benefit of a stage/screen setup) as a cloaked fox breaks into a chicken coop. Without looking, Fox grabs a hen and runs (strangely, on all fours, despite wearing a trench coat and sneakers on his find feet). Readers may be confused as to why Fox is on the run, but a page turn reveals the guard dogs on his tail. The thick-lined, comic book–esque illustrations depict Fox making a narrow escape and arriving home to discover he mistakenly bagged a duck. But Duck is not resigned to be dinner and goes about attempting to convince Fox that she is a dog in a protracted pantomime. Unsure, Fox tries to trick Duck into revealing her true nature and fails, returning Duck to her home the following day. Just as Fox returns to his den and begins to regret having given up a potential pet, he discovers his mistake. While this book may elicit laughs, the choppy pacing, grammatical shortcuts and confusing lack of direction as to what should be read first on a given page (the narration or the speech/thought bubbles?) will make for difficult read-alouds.
A goose egg. (Picture book. 5-8)