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Darling Hedgehog: Goes Down a Foxhole

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In this early reader chapter book, Darling Hedgehog goes on an adventure to look for her parents who have dropped out-of-sight.

Darling introduces herself to Miss Fox. Miss Fox gives her gifts, and Darling is distracted from her mission. The two animals look for things to do together in fantastical attempts to be friendly. When Darling enters Miss Fox's kitchen, she realizes that by nature, all strangers are not good for you. Will Darling save the day when it's already dinner time?

Darling Hedgehog learns about the animal nature of things in high humor and carefree, cute, and winning episodes. This childhood story reads a bit like Aesop's Fables or a retelling of Little Red Riding Hood, for children 4-8 or preschool and kindergarten, as a read-to-me picture book, and first grade and second grade as a chapter book.

Pictures similar to Charlotte's Web and the Mercy Watson series are characterized and painted in full-color, though the pages are set up like a chapter book.

This book helps to train children in natural wisdom, analysis, and discernment. It helps to balance the teachings of acceptance of everyone and friendliness to all. There may be good purposes for everyone to exist under heaven, yet all purposes may not be good for a child. So, beware, and flee from crafty foxes especially when they are holding your parents in the pantry.

44 pages, Paperback

Published August 8, 2019

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Auralee Arkinsly

6 books170 followers

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Displaying 1 - 30 of 62 reviews
Profile Image for MissBecka Gee.
1,444 reviews587 followers
September 12, 2019
I did not care for this.

All these things with just "okay" illustrations made this less than enjoyable.
Thanks to NetGalley and BooksGoSocial for my DRC.
Profile Image for Maureen Timerman.
2,778 reviews466 followers
September 4, 2019
The author has provided a darling book that is suggested for kindergarten to second grade, or ages 4 to 8.
The illustration draws the eye, and quickly got my 4-year-old nieces attention, she could hardly wait for me to turn the page!
There are life lessons here, with cute facts are offered, and without even realizing it they know a lot about hedgehogs!
This has quickly become a requested book, and we are reading it on our own!
I received this book Celebrate Lit, and was not required to give a positive review.

Profile Image for Sarah.
619 reviews48 followers
December 12, 2019
When I select a book to review, I either skim the synopsis or skip it entirely because I do not want to know any of the details of what happens within the pages until I actually read them myself. To avoid developing preconceived notions, I do the same with any reviews that have already been written about the book. As a result, I chose to review this children’s book based on the cute cover and the title. I love reading about nature, both fictional and factual, and enjoy anthropomorphic stories.

Auralee Arkinsly’s “Darling Hedgehog Goes Down a Foxhole”, however, was not at all what I was expecting. By page 4 I was very perturbed, and the feeling only intensified as I began to realize why “horror” was one of the subjects listed in the cataloguing information on the copyright page. The author’s intent of warning about stranger danger is pertinent and certainly important, but the execution in this story is sorely lacking. Because this book comes from a Christian publishing company, I expected there to be at least a subtle faith element, but I did not find any redemptive thread, discreet or not. In fact, quite the opposite.

Since the target age group for “Darling Hedgehog Goes Down a Foxhole” is early elementary, I am going to do something that I would otherwise steer clear of and detail some of the actions that I found alarming, thereby giving some spoilers in the process. As the story opens, Darling Hedgehog is looking for her lost parents and falls into a foxhole, where she meets Miss Fox, whose motivation seems like it should be clear but instead immediately becomes puzzling and distorted. She dresses “Dumpling” in a tutu and pink bow and then puts makeup on and dresses up herself. Darling becomes enamored with pleasing her in gratitude for the tutu and completely forgets about her missing parents. Miss Fox ties a consenting Darling to her convertible’s rear-view mirror with a leather strap so that she can “feel the wind” and later asks Darling to be a doorstop at her shop. Then when Darling prepares to get Miss Fox something to eat, she finds small animals in cages in the pantry, including her parents. She frees her mom and dad but none of them let any of the other animals out, although there is clearly an opportunity to do so. The moral of the story is that “Not every stranger can be a friend” and therefore the hedgehogs need their spines, so “They were glad to have found their spines…and each other.”

As much as I wanted to like this book, I can’t. If the story was reworked to be less demoralizing and strange, I think that it could be a good one. There are openings for Christian faith and values which, if explored, would bring an uplifting tone of redemption and point out the Lord’s protection over children and families. I give kudos to the illustrator, who is only in ninth grade, but I cannot recommend this book.

I received a complimentary copy of this book through CelebrateLit and was not required to post a favorable review. All opinions are my own.
Profile Image for Chautona Havig.
Author 247 books1,501 followers
December 14, 2019
Told in a whimsical style, Darling Hedgehog Goes Down a Foxhole is a cautionary tale about trusting people just because they do nice things for you. The book opens strong and with that hint of ominous warning of what’s to come, and ends with a nice happily-ever-after. Adorable, colorful illustrations accompany the text, and the size is perfect for the chapter book it was designed to be.

I do have a couple of quibbles.

First, Darling’s obsession with “doing something nice” for someone who gave her a gift didn’t ring true for me. Very few children I’ve ever met would be so dogged about essentially “paying for” a gift by doing something for the giver. Most of the book is a quest to find just the right thing to thank Miss Fox for her gift. It dragged out the story and bogged it down in the middle.

Additionally, the author states that she originally planned it as a picture book and received advice to make it a chapter book. I think I might have offered the same advice as written, but looking at it as a final product, trimmed and tightened a bit, it would have been a perfect picture book. I’m not sure how many second or third graders will be captivated by a story concept we usually associate with younger children.

For the persnickety, there are a couple of typos in the hardcopy. Personally, I imagine children in the targeted age group enjoying finding them, but there you have it.

I requested a review copy of this book and received a free one. Opinions are not influenced by this.

Recommended for youngsters who read far above their age level and as a picture book for younger children with longer attention spans. You could always skip half the middle where Darling searches and searches for some way to repay Miss Fox for her gift.
1,521 reviews17 followers
August 29, 2020

Darling Hedgehog: Goes Down a Foxhole is about Darling falling into a foxhole and meeting Miss Fox while looking for her parents. But she forgets her parents when she meets this stranger. I think the meaning if this story is to teach kids about talking to strangers, but it looses readers in the beginning by having Darling forget his parents because if a stranger. It is explained better over in the pages of the book. But there are still some things that are a bit strange. The pictures were cute, and they did fit the story. And the book cover is adorable with Darling in her tutu.

Hopefully the author can rework some of the story that readers are having problems with. It is a really cute story with great potential.

A special thanks to the author/publisher and Prism Book Tours for a copy of this book. I am not required to write a positive review, the opinions here are mine alone. I am disclosing this with my review in accordance with the

Profile Image for Susan.
Author 9 books73 followers
December 11, 2019
I was drawn to this book because we’ve had two pet hedgehogs in our family. They are adorable, sweet little animals! This easy reader for children (aimed at first and second grades) follows Darling Hedgehog as she deals with crafty Miss Fox.

I enjoyed the book. The story was nothing earth-shattering, but with the intended audience I wouldn’t expect it to be. There are lessons Darling learns as she makes her way through the events (one issue: I wish Darling had freed all the animals at the end, not just her parents!). The illustrations have sort of a vintage feel that reminds me of picture books of my childhood. Sweet story for kids.
Profile Image for Jessica Baker (A Baker's Perspective).
1,124 reviews55 followers
December 11, 2019
I thought this was such a cute story, with adorable illustrations to go with it. Perfect for early listeners/readers, this story holds a good message but allows children to have fun while reading. What a fantastic idea to have a hedgehog as the main character – Darling was charming, sweet, and was fun to watch. I love reading books with animals as main characters. I think it just really grabs a little person’s attention better, and allows imaginations to soar.

I truly have to compliment the illustrator as well. She did a wonderful job of bringing the story to life right before a little reader’s eyes. The attention to detail was great – which of course is really only seen by the adult, but still I noticed. Yes, it was kid friendly, but it made the story come alive for this adult too 🙂

Overall I think this is a great read for little ones. The sentences are short and easy to understand. Those in school may even be able to follow along and start to read on their own. I recommend having this book in your local library, as well as your own personal library! I received a complimentary copy of this book. I was not required to write a favorable review. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

Profile Image for Vivienne.
Author 2 books86 followers
September 15, 2019
Beware of crafty foxes! 🦊

Thank you to BooksGoSocial for a digital edition of ‘Darling Hedgehog Goes Down a Foxhole’, written by Auralee Arkinsly and illustrated by Julie Swezy, in exchange for an honest review.

This is a chapter book intended for early readers. It’s a sweet cautionary tale about a hedgehog named Darling whose parents are missing. Darling falls into a foxhole and rolls out the other end where she meets Miss Fox.

Miss Fox addresses her as ‘Dumpling’, which should cause some concern. Then she tries to win Darling’s friendship and get her to lower her guard by various means.

This was quite amusing, especially the illustrations as Miss Fox transports Darling on a bike and in a car. Poor Darling is oblivious...

I have a friend who has set up a wildlife camera that nightly captures local hedgehogs and foxes feeding from a station side-by-side so I was fairly confident that Darling would be safe.

This book clearly provides an opportunity for parents and/or teachers to introduce the subject of exercising caution when encountering overly friendly strangers as well as some information about foxes and hedgehogs.

Profile Image for Suzie Waltner.
Author 7 books107 followers
December 15, 2019
This book is written for first through third graders and is well done for that age range. The sentences are nice and short, the vocabulary is basic, and the illustrations are adorable, fitting the story well.
Within the technical elements in the story is a cautionary tale about listening to strangers and becoming sidetracked by material things or fun activities. There are some parts of this story that had me scratching my head and I wished they’d either been hammered out a little more or left out of the story entirely.

In fact, it almost seemed like it could have been made into two separate stories: one cautioning children about overly friendly strangers and another that cautions against friends who only take and never give back (although, it is Darling who is the one wanting to do something nice in this particular story).

For me, the illustrations are the bright point in this story, but the involved teacher or parent can expound on this story to extend the discussion of what Darling could or should have done differently.

Disclosure statement:
I receive a complimentary copy of this book but was not required to write a favorable review. All opinions expressed are mine.
Profile Image for Julia.
2,369 reviews61 followers
October 30, 2019
Darling Hedgehog Goes Down A Foxhole by Auralee Arkinsly is a charming book for young children ages eight years and below. It is beautifully illustrated by Julia Swezy. I only had a black and white copy on my kindle and I imagine a paperback in colour would be stunning.
The book has some life lessons to be learnt – trust must be earnt; be brave; find what you are good at. These are all starting points for discussions with your child.
With simple sentences this book is ideal to read aloud to young children or for early readers to read themselves. It would make a beautiful addition to any bookshelf.
Both the hedgehog and the fox are well illustrated and would appeal to young children. They would translate perfectly into soft toys too.
A very charming read for the very young.
I received this book for free. A favourable review was not required and all views expressed are my own.
Profile Image for Marilyn.
983 reviews
November 8, 2019
Darling Hedgehog Goes Down a Foxhole is a cute story for children eight and younger. The story and illustrations will appeal to young girls and even some boys will enjoy this nature story set to life. Darling meeting with Mrs. Fox gave way to wanting to please her, until later when she found something quit unexpected in the cabinet. Darling learned her lesson that not every friendly individual is a friend but may be “sly as a fox” in thinking of their own desires. Parents or teachers will be able to expand on the life lesson with their own illustrations about strangers, who true friends are and trusting others. I recommend this book for pre-K to primary age.

I received a complimentary copy of this book from Celebrate Lit and was under no obligation to post a positive review. All thoughts are my own opinion.
Profile Image for BreeAnn (She Just Loves Books).
1,387 reviews102 followers
September 15, 2019
I struggled with this book. A hedgehog's parent's are missing and she falls down a foxhole. The fox tries to befriend her to get the hedgehog to let her guard down, but the things this fox is asking Darling, the hedgehog, to do, are very odd. The tutu was very weird, and I didn't quite understand why. I know that this book was meant to caution against strangers, but I just don't feel that it did a great job of that. The illustrations felt unfinished as well, making the overall experience underwhelming.'

Thank you to NetGalley for providing this ARC in exchange for my honest review.
Profile Image for Cherry London.
Author 1 book79 followers
September 25, 2019
First off, I have to say I love the cover and little Darling and her curiosity. She thought to go looking for her parents who have been missing. But instead, she found Miss fox, oh boy, and she was a cunning and smooth one indeed.
A cute little book in which little Darling learned a valuable lesson after freeing her parents from the cage prison in Miss fox’s kitchen. The warnings of never trust a stranger, for not everyone you meet, will mean you well, is ever so true in this book.
Profile Image for Laura Bartnick.
Author 2 books18 followers
October 9, 2019
I adore this fantasy-nature story about a small hedgehog encountering a natural opposite! Sweet with a WOW! The simile being "as sly as a fox" is a lesson that second graders are able to learn, and the concepts about identifying oneself and one's opposite or a disguised opponent is an entirely valuable lesson in the real world. The detailed images are bright and beautiful.
Profile Image for Raven.
3,384 reviews52 followers
September 9, 2019
A nice moral lesson and cute facts about hedgehogs, what's not to like. I liked the illustrations too and found this book to be quite darling.
Profile Image for Jeanette Fallon.
553 reviews6 followers
December 16, 2019
I have three grandchildren and at one time or another, I would take them to the library.  We had a great time picking out books, play on the computer and enjoying what the library offers.  My grandkids would pick out one book to take to Nannie's house to snuggle and read.  I am sure that this book would be one that would land up in our book bag.

The illustrations in this book were so precious.  It made me think of some of the illustrations you can find in a Beatrix Potter or Tasha Tudor book.

The story was cute but could be frightening for a young child.  It kind of made me think of Hansel and Gretel.   There were a couple of lessons that can be learned from this story.  The Hedgehog was trying so hard to be valuable to the fox..to earn his friendship.  The lessons:  be yourself and some people or foxes shouldn't be your friends.  Pick your friends wisely.  Your friends should like you for whom you are.

I received this free from Celebrate Lit to review.

About the Book

Book: Darling Hedgehog Goes Down A Foxhole

Author: Auralee Arkinsly

Genre: Early reader chapter book

Release Date: September 13, 2019

Darling Hedgehog learns about the animal nature of things in high humor and carefree, cute, and winning episodes. This childhood story reads a bit like Aesop’s Fables or a retelling of Little Red Riding Hood, for children 4-8 or preschool and kindergarten, as a read-to-me picture book, and first grade and second grade as a chapter book.

Pictures similar to the Mercy Watson series are characterized and painted in full-color, though the pages are set up like a chapter book.

This book helps to train children in natural wisdom, analysis, and discernment. It helps to balance the teachings of acceptance of everyone and friendliness to all. There may be good purposes for everyone to exist under heaven, yet all purposes may not be good for a child. So, beware, be discrete, and flee from crafty foxes especially when they are holding your parents in the pantry.

Click here to purchase your copy.

About the Author

Auralee Arkinsly writes in good humor about serious subjects because kids of all ages can learn a lot from laughing. She is a strong believer in right and wrong but knows that getting onto the right path can mean falling down a slippery slope. She reckons if she can save some from the bumps and bruises, then she has done her job

More from Auralee

I’m so excited to launch my children’s book, Darling Hedgehog Goes Down a Foxhole with the Celebrate Lit crew!  You are a river of hope for a new author.

So, here’s the story behind the story.

My friend and fellow author, Kathy Joy, left me a small hedgehog in a tutu as a going away gift on her guest bed after she had been visiting. I put it on the windowsill in my bedroom, and every morning, I would see it when I awoke.

I don’t know if you can relate to this experience, but I often wake up from a good night’s sleep with the gift of a problem being solved.  Sometimes, I wake up with a creative idea.  Well, one day, I awoke to find that I had the beginnings of a child’s story about where the hedgehog found her tutu.

Initially, it was a simple story about Darling Hedgehog finding a foxy friend who helps Darling find her calling.

I wrote out the story and then asked a talented neighborhood girl if she would like to draw the pictures for the tall tale. Having seen a lot of Julia’s sketches as she grew up, I thought that she might like to know what it felt like to earn money from her talents and at the same time, learn about the process of creating a book with an author to propose to a publishing company.

She agreed. Julia was in ninth grade. She was at the age where she was beginning to think about high school jobs and even to make plans for college and a career.

The same day we wrote out our contract, Julia sent me her first image of what she imagined Darling to look like. It clearly was not a mistake to hire this young artist!

When I awoke another morning, I believed God had given me another bit of advice. I needed to do better research on the nature of hedgehogs and foxes, their habitats and characteristics. The outcome caused the story to take a turn towards intrigue.  It became a fable. It became an action-adventure animal story. It became better.

A librarian encouraged us to continue with it no longer as a picture book for very small children but as an early reader chapter book for second graders learning about similes.

I hope that we can teach children to notice facts and objective truth as they are being trained for life. So, I’ve accepted that my child’s fantasy had to grow some legs of gravity and wisdom.  I’ve trusted my editors and beta readers that this is true, but I’m not above being told off.

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Lighthouse Academy, December 19 (Guest Review from Marilyn Ridgway)

Because I said so — and other adventures in Parenting, December 20

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Maureen’s Musings, December 23

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Texas Book-aholic, December 24

Debbie’s Dusty Deliberations, December 24


To celebrate her tour, Auralee is giving away the grand prize of a set of Darling Hedgehog greeting cards!!

Be sure to comment on the blog stops for nine extra entries into the giveaway! Click the link below to enter.

Profile Image for Nicole.
719 reviews21 followers
December 22, 2019
This review is going to be a little different than my normal posts. Today, you are getting a two-for-one — one mini-review from my point of view and one from my 7-year old, Bella!

Mom’s Review: I love two things about this children’s chapter book. First, I adore the illustrations. They’re colorful, they’re bright, they add a nice touch of humor, and they help tell a good story. The second thing I appreciate, as a mom, is the lesson this book teaches children. “Not every stranger can be a friend” is a solid, unfortunate truth that ALL kids need to understand in this day and age.

But, I have two issues with this story. My first issue is that I do not appreciate the set-up for this story. I found it creepy. Darling, the protagonist, falls into a stranger’s house. That stranger gives Darling gifts, and without hesitation, Darling accepts. Then, Darling tries in several ways to come up with a gift for the stranger so that she and the stranger can be friends. I found this interplay very dangerous and very disturbing. Since my child had the capacity for cognitive understanding I have hammered into her that she is NOT allowed to take “gifts” from strangers unless mommy or daddy say it’s OK. As a mommy, I was disturbed from the beginning because this character acts the exact opposite as I’ve taught my child. Yes, things are later figured out, but I struggle with Darling’s blind acceptance of gifts from a creepy stranger.

My second issue occurs when Darling’s father later tells her that she was always safe from the fox because her hedgehog spines would keep her safe. I didn’t understand the value of this because while hedgehogs do have sharp spines to protect them, small children do not. Children are only as safe from predators as parents and trusted adults make them. I don’t understand how a child could relate to Darling’s character. Was this explanation supposed to be metaphorical? Is the author just attempting to teach the reader about the nature of hedgehogs? This response from Darling’s dad took me out of the story, and I found it odd. Sort of like a false sense of security.

Overall, I think Darling Hedgehog Goes Down a Foxhole is a story a parent must read with her children so some explaining and clarifying can be done. It definitely is a good “talking point” book to use as a teaching tool with one’s kids.

Bella’s Review: I like the hedgehog because she is cute. I do not think the fox is cute because she tries to eat Darling’s parents and friends. I think kids should read this book because it teaches a lesson to stay far, far away from strangers and to not take stuff from them. This book has safety rules to stay away from strangers. I like this book. I think this is a great book to read to kids. I hope you like this book too.

I received a review copy of this novel in paperback and eBook form from the author via Celebrate Lit. In no way has this influenced my review. The opinions expressed in this review are my own.
Profile Image for Christy.
830 reviews35 followers
August 26, 2020
Darling Hedgehog Goes Down a Foxhole has adorable illustrations and a fable-like lesson. When Darling goes down the foxhole, she meets Miss Fox on the other side. As an adult, you know where the story is going. Foxes are used in fables to represent sly, tricky characters. The age range this is aimed at probably won’t understand that at first, so you’ll need to explain that if you read this to them.

Darling is very susceptible to Miss Fox’s trickiness because she wants her to like her. That’s a lesson to teach our kids too. Don’t change yourself to make people like you. And don’t take gifts from strangers! If you read this to your little ones, you will have quite a bit to explain to them since much of the story makes Miss Fox seem trustworthy. Also, Darling goes out of her way to find a way to make Miss Fox want to keep her around. Kids shouldn’t have to earn friendship, and like I said earlier, they shouldn’t have to change to make anyone like them.
Profile Image for Erin.
1,473 reviews6 followers
December 16, 2019
My Thoughts on Darling Hedgehog Goes Down A Foxhole:

Have you ever found a cute children’s book that you enjoy reading to your kids? I have found a few before but this is definitely a title that can be added to the list. It’s not annoying. I’ve not grown tired of it yet.

Think a new Aesops Fable and you’ll be on the right track to what this book is like. It’s super cute with a good lesson to teach. Written to be read to your children or for kids beginning to read chapter books. It gives the age range as 4-9 but I’m here to tell you this is definitely not the only age range it’ll appeal to. I loved it and I’m 34. My 14-year-olds sat and listened while I read it as well as my three year old. I think this will be one of those books that appeals to all ages because of how cute it is.
We received an e copy of this book but I find myself thinking of purchasing a print copy so we can see the illustrations in all their glory. They are colorful and very much caught the eye for young children.

I highly recommend this as a new book to grace the shelves of your children’s library or your home bookshelf. My prediction is that it will become a quick favorite and you’ll wear the copy out. Maybe it is good that we have got an e copy as we won’t wear it out that’s for sure!

If you still need a quick Christmas present I think this would make a great stocking stuffer. And it’s currently available on kindle unlimited if you have a subscription to that as well.

I have voluntarily reviewed a complimentary copy of this book which I received from Celebrate Lit. All views expressed are only my honest opinion. I was not required to write a positive review nor was I compensated in any other way. All opinions expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the FTC regulations.
5,340 reviews
August 24, 2020
I found Auralee Arkinsly’s Darling Hedgehog: Goes Down a Foxhole to be an adorable children’s story. It teaches some valuable lessons for very young readers. It, also, has some fun, vibrant and colorful illustrations by the talented Julia Swezy. The whole book was just a delight to read.

I am giving Darling Hedgehog: Goes Down a Foxhole four and a half stars. I recommend it for readers who are early readers, ages four to seven years old. I think they would love this entertaining book.

I received Darling Hedgehog: Goes Down a Foxhole from the publisher. This review is one hundred percent my own honest opinion.
Profile Image for Jennifer Sienes.
Author 11 books379 followers
December 18, 2019
I love children’s stories, especially those with a life lesson. Auralee Arkinsly is clearly sharing an important lesson in her book Darling Hedgehog Goes Down a Foxhole (illustrated by Julia Swezy). As a former teacher, I also understand the importance of not “dummying down” vocabulary for young children. It’s not a bad thing when a child must ask what a word means. However, pre-K children will need more than a few words defined for them. This seems to be illustrated for young children but written for the older.

I love the lessons taught in this story—we shouldn’t easily trust strangers. That’s something we teach our children from a very early age. However, there were other aspects that felt contrived. What was the point of the tutu and the bow? Also, Darling quickly forgot all about her parents until she found them caged. It would have been good if the author at least kept the missing parents in the forefront of Darling’s mind.

And many children might wonder why Darling and her parents left all the other animals caged for Miss Fox to later eat. The perfect opportunity for another life lesson was lost at the end of the story.

I received a copy of this book for reviewing purposes, but the opinions are my own.
Profile Image for Sara Jane Jacobs.
Author 4 books13 followers
December 22, 2019
For me, when it comes to children's books it's always wonderful illustrations that draw me in and I thought the ones in this story were super-cute! This is a cautionary tale which I found it to be very thought-provoking. Although it is classified as an early reader chapter book, to me it seems more like a "read it with your children" kind of book. I would even suggest that parents read it first to assess the age appropriateness and consider how their children might react to the story. This tale opens up many opportunities for discussion and might be better suited for older children.

I was given a copy of this book for free. I was not required to give a favorable review nor was any money received for this review. All comments and opinions are my own.

Profile Image for ArynTheLibraryan.
290 reviews15 followers
December 17, 2019
When we first read Darling Hedgehog Goes Down a Foxhole, I went through a range of responses. I guess I'm a suspicious person (at least when I'm reading) because I kept expecting something dramatic and bad to happen.

There is wisdom in searching for your lost parents, but Darling Hedgehog was easily distracted from her mission. There is wisdom for kids in finding out how to discern their particular talents. Maybe when your parents have suddenly gone missing isn't the best time, but hey, that sly fox is good! Or maybe she just enjoys being liked instead of feared? I don't know.

Overall, I think Darling Hedgehog has a lot of opportunity for fun. While not explicitly a Christian book, it's an interesting story, if somewhat fanciful.

Reading Levels:
Our first read-through, I read the whole thing, maybe having my barely 1st grader read a word or sentence here and there. But reading it again a couple of months later, he was able to confidently read several pages. I love seeing progress like that!

I recieved a copy of this book from the Author/Celebrate Lit. I chose to review it here, all thoughts are my own.
Profile Image for Kathy.
587 reviews
December 20, 2019
Darling Hedgehog really is darling. And even if she is easily distracted, she has a good heart. But she has much to learn about the nature of animals.

Children will enjoy this book either as a picture book to have read to them, or as an Easy Reader to read on their own. There are lessons to be learned throughout the book, so readers can discover something new each time they read it. It is divided into three chapters so a new reader will have the freedom to put it down and return to it at a later time.

The illustrations are cute. The pink and green found throughout the book really pop and tie the story and pictures together.

Both listeners and young readers will enjoy this book, as well as the adults with whom it is shared.

I received an ARC of this book from the author, through Celebrate Lit, for review purposes. The thoughts expressed here are my own.
Profile Image for Carol Keen.
Author 6 books116 followers
December 14, 2019
As you have probably guessed by now, Darling is a young hedgehog. When her parents go missing, she goes to find them. That's how she finds herself down a fox hole, and out the other side.
Here she meets a stranger, Miss Fox, who dresses her up and calls her "Dumpling." That's scary!

From there it gets scarier. Poor Darling is starved for a good friend. What lengths will she go to to keep Miss Fox as a "friend" and who will pay the ultimate price?

Now, I very familiar with hedgehogs and I didn't have any objections to the illustrations. They work well for the book. What does upset me, is the issues in the story, and that at the recommended age of 9 or so. That this is going to upset some folks, probably not just children, as it did bother me.

Darling is easily distracted but allows Miss Fox to put her in horrible situations. There aren't any scriptures or any obvious Christian themes. That said, it's clean, except for those who weren't "saved" shall we say, and paid the ultimate price as far as we know. It's a creative take on who is a stranger and who is a friend, but I feel like it could have been a lot stronger with some things in it changed, and if marketed for a Christian audience, scripture being added would be nice.

My copy came from Celebrate Lit. This review contains my thoughts and opinions of this book, left of my own free will.
Profile Image for Connie Saunders.
1,359 reviews91 followers
December 11, 2019
This is the story of a little hedgehog named Darling who goes searching for her missing parents and finds herself making friends with beautiful Miss Fox. At first all seems fine as they enjoy getting to know each other. And then, "All of a sudden it felt awkward trying to be friends" and Darling Hedgehog realizes that maybe a friendship with Miss Fox is not meant to be. After finding her parents trapped in Miss Fox's kitchen, Papa Hedgehog explains to Darling that "We've each learned a lesson about the nature of things."....."Not every stranger can be a friend."

Darling Hedgehog Goes Down a Foxhole is a 37 page chapter book with colorful illustrations and an entertaining story. Beginning readers may find the words a litte advanced so it will probably be best for parents and children to read it together and then have the chance to talk about Darling's journey. Author Auralee Arkinsly allows this little hedgehog to be brave but to also be cautious about a fox she doesn't really know. Darling is courteous to Miss Fox but she also has a feeling that something isn't right. Courtesy and respect are desirable traits but in today's society, it is very important for children to learn to trust their instincts and to practice caution. It is sadly true that "Not every stranger can be a friend."

If you are looking for an enjoyable children's story that also educates, you will want Darling Hedgehog Goes Down a Foxhole.

I received a complimentary copy of this book but a positive review was not required. These are my own opinions.
Profile Image for Nyla.
Author 1 book11 followers
December 16, 2019
Darling Hedgehog Goes Down a Foxhole by author Auralee Arkinsly is a whimsical Children’s book for ages about four to eight. Hedgehogs seem to be popular so children will be excited about reading a book about the adventures of one.

The writing in this chapter book is nice. Kids will learn about hedgehogs while being entertained. Older children should be able to follow along as you read to them or possibly read it to you.

I loved that the little hedgehog was named Darling. The lesson taught of being friendly to other people while being aware of potential danger is timeless. Today especially we need to guard our little ones.

The only problem with this book is that it might scare some of the younger ones. I was unsettled with some of the tale. It could be frightening to children. I expected this to be a Christian book but there was no sign of that.

With some editing this could could be a really good story. The way it is written, I am hesitant to recommend it. Celebrate Lit provided a copy but these are my own true words.
657 reviews3 followers
December 16, 2019
I thought this would be a cute book because I like hedgehogs but I was confused with what the book was trying to convey. It seemed like it was encouraging kids to be friends with those that are different than us, but then that "new friend" turns out to be not someone she should be friends with. So maybe the book is trying to say you shouldn't trust new people? I also wasn't sure if the fox was trying to be a legitimate friend to the hedgehog or if she had ulterior motives since she had to know she had the hedgehog parents in the cage. Also, Darling forgets her search for her missing parents and goes out of her way to please the fox to gain her friendship. this seems to be promoting "buying" friendship. The drawings were colorful, but I found them to be rather childish, which I suppose might appeal to children, but I don't think I could recommend it for young children with the confusing message.

I got a free copy of this book. All thoughts and opinions are my own and given voluntarily. No compensation was received for my review.
December 20, 2019
This book was a fun little read. I enjoyed how sweet Darling was. The story could be a little frightening for children, but probably not more so than any other fairytale where children are eaten up by goblins or such. The illustrations were nice, and I think my little sister will enjoy this book. I'll probably even put it in a future classroom of mine. The first chapter was a bit disproportional to the rest, but that's a-okay. Definitely a book you'd want to grab from the library, but unless your child is a die-hard hedgehog fanatic, library is fine. I'm glad I read this one. I'm always looking to expand my knowledge of children's lit.

I received a complimentary copy form celebrate lit but all opinions are my own.
Profile Image for Connie Hill.
1,400 reviews19 followers
December 19, 2019
This book is perfectly geared toward preschool to about 3rd grade. My oldest son is in 3rd grade, while he told me he thought it was childish --- he listened while we read the book. This is a super cute story with beautifully done illustrations. The story is easy to read that my still learning to read 1st grader was able to follow along. The storyline is a great reminder to children. Not all who are nice to you are your true friends. It is an important reminder to children especially this day in age.

I received a copy of this book through the Celebrate Lit blogging program. All thoughts are my own.
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