Bogo fails in his attempts at zany self-improvement inventions but eventually realizes the power of his innate gifts.
Outlandish, colorful art that begins on the book’s cover will lure children to this clever, unusual tale. The first pages use a warm palette of hot pinks and oranges and a dizzying perspective to show a view from below of the fox’s treehouse. The text notes that this is an unusual home for a fox, but “he was a very curious fox and from up there he could see everything much better.” Clear lettering and frequent but appropriate use of bold print encourages reading aloud. Bogo’s inventions stem from his feeling of inferiority because so many other animals “were so incredible.” As he tries to invent ways to do everything from fly like a bird to swim like a fish, hilarious artwork (check out his armored-tank turtle shell) accompanies a refrain that works well for young readers: “Oh Bogo! You can’t have everything! Who ever heard of a fox that can fly!” (or wear glasses, etc.). After he retreats into isolation, Bogo’s intrinsic fox qualities serendipitously allow him to save the day for several other animals. New insights ensue. Although his epiphany is one many picture-book characters have had before, an applauseworthy difference is the supportiveness of his fellow creatures throughout.
An entertaining story with whimsical illustrations and lots of heart. (Picture book. 4-8)