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Maybe a Fox

4.06  ·  Rating details ·  3,520 ratings  ·  723 reviews
Sylvie and Jules.

Jules and Sylvie.

Jules adores her older-by-one-year sister, Sylvie.

Sylvie: beautiful like their mother.
Sylvie: supreme maker of tiny snow families.
Sylvie: faster than fast.

Sylvie: gone.

Into thin air, Sylvie goes missing, and as Jules stumbles in grief, a fox cub is born. A shadow fox, spirit and animal in one. From the minute the cub opens her eyes, she se
Hardcover, 272 pages
Published March 8th 2016 by Atheneum/Caitlyn Dlouhy Books (first published March 2016)
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Raiann I've already read this book. I hope that answers your query.
Charlotte Nash
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4.06  · 
Rating details
 ·  3,520 ratings  ·  723 reviews

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Jul 05, 2016 rated it really liked it

3.5 rounding up to 4 because this book wasn't written for old ladies like me with no juice left in their hearts.

it's a sweetly sad middle grade novel about grief and the coping mechanisms and magical thinking we cling to in order to carry on living in the aftermath of devastating loss. and also, magical animals.

let's be clear - i read this because of the fox on the cover, thinking it would be like Pax. and surface-level it is - it's a sad book that involves a fox, bu
“Maybe A Fox” is an absolutely beautiful book that I have no doubt will be in the running, and will most likely win, many prestigious awards. It’s one of the rare children’s books that present the issues they live with in a frank manner, thereby avoiding the patronizing attitude with which children’s literature so often suffers.

Somehow, there is whimsy and hope mixed in amongst the realities of war and death. The resilience of family is a central theme, along with the promise of hope in even the
m a r y l i z
Oct 03, 2016 rated it really liked it
Well...there went my heart.

THIS BOOK HONESTLY CRUSHED MY SOUL LIKE A GRAPE. I can't even tell you how emotional this made me.

I would give it five stars if not for some...odd spiritual stuff in it. The book talked a lot about creatures being "linked" to nature and other such things, and I wasn't all that fond of that. However, the writing was just lovely and laced with raw emotion. I WANT TO HUG ALL THE PRECIOUS, HURTING CHARACTERS. <3

Now if you'll excuse me, I'll just be trying to piece my h
Second read. Just as heart wrenching and beautiful as the first time.
Maybe a Fox is a deeply emotional middle grade book, dealing with relationships, burning wishes, and loss. It is the kind of middle grade that will pull you in and won't let you go until you're finished, the kind that will absolutely devastate you, and you will emerge feeling somehow bereft and hopeful all at once, and with a feeling of gladness for having read it.

It's about a family that does its best to carry on after being suddenly downgraded to a single-parent family.
And somehow, knowing tha
Lynn Plourde
Mar 11, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Maybe a Fox . . . Maybe a Newbery . . . if I had a vote.

Yup, it's that good! Yup, a book with two authors is eligible for a Newbery (I know, not because I'm a kennen, but because I checked the criteria). The only Newbery problem I foresee is there is not enough space for a sticker on the cover without covering something important.

This book is so loving, so emotional, so beautifully written. All of which leaves me in awe, but especially the beautifully written part--how in the world could TWO au
Jun 10, 2017 rated it really liked it

This was totally a cover buy, I absolutely love foxes 🦊.
Maybe a fox is a quick, easy, adorable read. I love the relationship between the sisters its real and raw and heartbreaking. The chapters that are from the foxes perspective were my favorite, i think i need a pet fox now ever more. Sam, Jules and Sylvie are very likable characters and have great personalities.
Sylvie. Senna. Run. Faster.
Beautiful story.
Whispering Stories
Dec 06, 2016 rated it really liked it
Maybe a Fox is a beautiful, charismatic, charming, emotional book about the bond that two young sisters have, even in the after world.

Jules and Sylvie are sisters. It has been just them and their dad since their mum died many years before. Jules is eleven. She is just like her dad. They both love collecting rocks, and are very sensible. Twelve year old Sylvie looks just like her mum, much to the annoyance of Jules. Sylvie is full of energy, and buzzing with adrenaline. She also likes to run, rea
Thanks for ripping my heart out again!!! Wow! Grab the tissues for this one, it's beautiful!!! I was reading this book while waiting for my son at driver's ed, and cried like a baby in my car. (I hope nobody saw me. That would be embarrassing!) Then, when my son got in the car, I told him about the story and cried again! How am I supposed to booktalk this book with out breaking down into a messy puddle?!?!?!? This is a wonderful story of sisters Sylvie and Jules, but like always with Appelt ther ...more
Oct 27, 2016 rated it really liked it
Lovely little book about life and death and dealing with grief. Not too heavy for kids (the intended audience) for once, and very nice use of animals and nature as characters, rather than METAPHORS, CHILDREN. I can see why this is getting a lot of awards buzz.
Jan 21, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Wow. This book just gutted me. It was haunting and magical; sad and heart-wrenching, yet amazingly beautiful. A definite must read. I've put this one high on my list to receive multiple awards next year.
Munro's Kids
Nov 26, 2015 rated it liked it
I'd rate this book 3.5 - 3.75 stars, but I just couldn't justify giving it four "official" stars. It is lovely. It is beautiful. It is poignant. It is also going to be a very tough sell for the average reader.

It deals with Jules, an adolescent girl, who loses her big sister/best friend Sylvie after she falls into a river and is never seen again. Their best friend Sam and his big brother Elk are also mourning losses: the loss of Elk's best friend Zeke, who went off to war with Elk but didn't foll
Jun 24, 2017 rated it really liked it
If you like this, you might also like The Underneath (which I did) and Pax (which was somewhat of a disappointment to me).
A few aspects of this seemed, to me, a bit contrived for the sake of the story (beyond the big implausibilities, of course). But mostly it was worth it. I love the philosophical discussion aka the Maybe Game. I love Super Friend Sam, and the authors' reminder that other people grieve, too. I don't love Wishing rocks.
Nov 14, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A beautiful magical story is about two sisters and a fox. Author Alison McGhee was inspired by writing this book as Alison and her daughter witnessed a a fox In Wirth Park long ago. I love this cover as I actually have a jumper with a fox on and my grandson loves it. I loved the poem by Patricia Fargnoli at the beginning of Maybe a Fox. I would like to thank the publisher for sending me this touching and powerful contemporary story of sisterly love and grief, with a twist of magical realism book ...more
Laura Harrison
Aug 04, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Maybe a Fox definitely has a good chance of winning the Newbery for 2017. Original and so, so good. Cover art is extraordinary, btw. Reminds me of the incredible dust jacket art of my youth. Phenomenal.
Brenda Kahn
Wow. Give this short but powerful novel about grief and healing to your students/ patrons who love sad books. It is achingly sad, beautifully written and peopled by complex, memorable characters. Its Vermont setting is vividly drawn as well.
Gees woman (you know who you are!) you ask so much of me.

We know it's hard to cope with grief, to allow time to heal.

Cate Brooks
Very mythical, lyrically written read. I think this an objectively good book but it was hard for me to enjoy. Could have been the timing a bit but it just seemed overly sad (2 deaths in a family of 4 is rough and seemed possibly unnecessary for the themes explored). Also got a bit bogged down with the pacing. I think I needed more to happen. But I do love animal books and all the classical children's lit themes of loss, grief and family gave me plenty of feels. This is also a book that will be a ...more
Destinee Sutton
Is 2016 shaping up to be the Year of Sad or what? (See: Raymie Nightingale and Pax.)

By the way, total tangent, I unofficially dubbed 2015 the Year of the Grandparent: Listen, Slowly, Circus Mirandus, Goodbye Stranger, Gone Crazy in Alabama, Bayou Magic, Sunny Side Up, The Lightning Queen, Great Ball of Light, In the Footsteps of Crazy Horse, Unusual Chickens for the Exceptional Poultry Farmer, and saving the best for (ahem) last, Last Stop on Market Street.

That was fun! I'd much rather list bo
Ms. Yingling
Sep 16, 2015 rated it liked it
E ARC from Edelweiss Above the Treeline

Jules is dealing with the sudden death of her mother when her sister, Sylvie, runs through the woods near their house and plummets to her death at a waterfall. Since her body is not recovered, both Jules and her father struggle, especially since Jules thinks she should have been able to stop her sister. Her friend, Sam, tries to help her, but he's also trying to help his brother Elk deal with the war death of his friend Zeke. Add to this mix Sam's attempts
Marathon County Public Library
On an ordinary wintry school day like so many others, while sisters twelve-year-old Sylvie and eleven-year-old Jules are waiting for the school bus, Sylvie runs into the woods and disappears. Why would she go? They were forbidden to go on this path leading to the Slip, a small geological formation in which the river bed disappears into an open cavern and forms a small pool. A shadow fox cub, both animal and spirit, known to be lucky, is born at the same time, somehow linking their lives together ...more
Brooke Donohue
Jan 07, 2017 rated it liked it
This is a very very sad book...
(I cried at least three times during my reading)
Dec 26, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Readers Looking for Middle-Grade Fiction About Loss & the Human Connection to the Natural World
Beautiful but heart-breaking, this thoughtful examination of sisterly love and loss from co-authors Kathi Appelt and Alison McGhee follows the story of Jules, a young rock-hound whose deep bond with her elder sister Sylvie has been a mainstay in her life, since the death of their mother some time before. When Sylvie, whose 'burning wish' is always to run faster, falls into the Slip - the point at which the local river goes briefly underground - and is never seen again, Jules and her father must ...more
Vernon Area Public Library KIDS
Apr 25, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Grades 6-8, Lexile: 740L
“Slow and fast. Thick and thin. Eleven and twelve. Jules and Sylvie. Thick as thieves, their dad called them.”

Sisters Jules and Sylvie are only one year apart. 12 year old Sylvie is the runner and also the more impulsive of the Sherman sisters. Jules, on the other hand, is a year younger and more sensible. She is an avid rock collector and steady as a rock.

On a snowy day, right before the school bus comes, Sylvie darts off to throw a wishing rock into the Slip, a treacherous area of the fast mo
Gerardo Delgadillo
Apr 20, 2018 rated it it was amazing
5 out of 5 cute foxes!

One word defines this book: Gorgeous.

I loved many things about MAYBE A FOX. Starting with the dual story lines that wow'ed me, to the way the characters are portrayed without being in-your-face obvious. The story uses simple prose to convey powerful emotions.

Having written a co-authored novel myself, I'm impressed with Kathi Appelt and Alison McGhee collaboration skills--amazing team work.

MAYBE A FOX is one of those few memorable novels that stays with you. I cannot recomme
Jan 20, 2019 rated it it was amazing
It was an emotional book, just like all the other fox books I have read (What is up with that?). Other that all the emotion in the book, it is moving. It made me speechless at the end, where Sylvie died a second time. I cannot imagine what it must've felt like, to die again. But, this book gave me so many questions, too. Did Sylvie/Senna remember everything? What are all the powers of a Kennen? There are so many others it would take me a while to write. Besides that, the book was great!
Apr 15, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This is a very beautiful story. It is hard to say much without giving anything away. In the midst of saddness, there is much spiritual beauty. Some people believe in spirit animals and this gives a glimpse of what it may be like from the spirit animal point of view. Though a youth level book, which was enjoyed by my 9 year old, as an adult, I too was moved by this story.
I didn’t expect to love this book but expected to like it more than I did.

It was way too short and fast paced (only 270 pages and the font is huge) - I couldn’t connect to anything.

Despite it being so small, some plot lines were not needed and felt out of place - it drew me away from the story I cared about.

But it’s magical and whimsical which I liked which is why it’s three not two stars.
Rute Guerreiro
Mar 26, 2017 rated it really liked it
"Maybe a Fox" is a simple book, with a simple story but full of meaning.
It was the first time that I ever knew a main character with such a peculiar hobbie and that made the book even better!

PS: I hate you Liz Redding!!!
Carlie Corson
Sep 07, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This is an amazing book. It definitely tugs at your heart strings and it takes a certain kind of person to read it. I know that I absolutely loved it!
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Lives in College Station, TX with husband Ken and four adorable cats.

Two sons, both musicians.

Serves on the faculty at Vermont College of Fine Arts in the MFA in Writing for Children and Young Adults Program.
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