A rollicking great adventure of daring as ‘Fantastic Mr. Fox’ and his family and friends try to outwit three rich farmers. Mr. Fox has been helping himself to the farmers’ chickens and ducks. Of course, this has got the farmers quite irritated, and they try their best to capture Mr. Fox. There is humour in plenty as the mean farmers wait stubbornly above the foxhole, trying to starve the foxes so they will come out.

Mr. Fox gets his tail shot off, but is determined to protect his young foxes and family and will never give in. He begins to dig a tunnel away from the original foxhole, so they can get out to get food.

However, when the farmers figure out the foxes are tunnelling their way around underground to escape, they get in bulldozing machinery to try to out dig them. On the verge of starvation, it is then that Mr Fox devises a plan to tunnel out the very opposite way to the machinery…machinery cannot go right under the farmers’ own houses, so that is where Mr. Fox and his young foxes go!

Mrs. Fox is so proud of Mr. Fox, she is willing to tell everyone “my husband is a fantastic fox.” He is a protector, courageous, hopeful, gregarious, inspirational, smart and resourceful. (Unlike the movie adaptation of this book, which portrays her as saying she wished she had never married him and in which rat refers to Mrs. Fox as a fine tart in her young days!)

A classic book that has been enjoyed by generations of children from the creator of Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, James and the Giant Peach, Matilda, The BFG and many other highly recommendable books.  It is a good read-aloud for six year olds who haven’t learned to read fluently longer texts.

A former children’s librarian, Jane Fagan is currently a full-time mother of two.