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Fox 8 Kindle Edition
Here is a writer whose output varies widely in theme and style, but where the unifying element is the deep sense of goodness that radiates from it . Reading Saunders is moral education . It's a story that can and will be read by children - my own 10-year-old love it - but it's also a book of deep, complex truths . Very funny . A story about cultural difference and tribalism, about greed and the destruction of the American landscape (Alex Preston Observer)
Very funny . With Fox 8, Saunders does something one might, in isolation, think it almost impossible for a book to do, which is to resensitise the reader to violence (Guardian)
When it comes to delivering pathos, humour and character with trip-along efficiency, underestimate Saunders at your peril . Saunders is a masta at werk (Esquire)
What starts as a sweet, idiosyncratic tale quickly becomes bleak and brutal as it emerges that Fox 8 is an émigré's tale. It'll take you an hour to read but will stay with you far longer (Metro)
Fox 8 is not just a handsome little stocking-filler but can help to transform the world in its own small beautiful way (Arifa Akbar Financial Times)
A sweet little morality tale about disillusionment, cruelty, inequality and, finally, hope . It feels like literature enacted as a form of activism. Not many writers could get away with this, but somehow Saunders carries it off (Evening Standard)
Remarkable . From the opening sentence, Fox's voice leaps off the page . Saunders is a master of narration, and Fox's voice is perfectly pitched (Scotsman)
George Saunders's Fox 8 is a deceptive little crittur - it begins as the brightest of fables but then carries us briskly to the pits of bleakness. It reminds us of the skill of Saunders's phenomenal ear, and of his great, enduring kindness as a storyteller (Kevin Barry Irish Times)
Tugs the heartstrings (Daily Mail) --This text refers to an alternate kindle_edition edition.
- ASIN : B07GSZ2LZV
- Publisher : Bloomsbury Publishing; 1st edition (15 November 2018)
- Language : English
- File size : 5843 KB
- Text-to-Speech : Enabled
- Screen Reader : Supported
- Enhanced typesetting : Enabled
- X-Ray : Not Enabled
- Word Wise : Not Enabled
- Print length : 64 pages
- Best Sellers Rank: #347,667 in Kindle Store (See Top 100 in Kindle Store)
- Customer Reviews:
Top review from India
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I love Saunders (Lincoln in the Bardo though is my least favourite book written by him, though it won the Man Booker Prize and all that). His short fiction is par excellence, his essays even better in my opinion, and basically whatever he writes is pure gold. Fox 8 is no less of a book because of its size. If anything, after you are done reading it, you tend to agree that it had to end, where it did, even if you wanted more of it.
This 64-page novella/novelette is about a fox - the name is Fox 8 who is curious about humans (poor sad fox. I for one can’t stand most humans) and also learns some of the English language, by watching parents read to their children (I love how the fox also debunks fairy tales for us with reference to the role of the fox in them). Saunders is in his full form with inventiveness of language – writing (phonetically) the way a fox would – yooman and not human, bare and not bear, and the list goes on. At first, you wonder about the writing style and when you give in, you are in love with this fantastical tale of two foxes visiting a mall (that has been built razing most of their forest) and what happens next.
Before I forget, kudos and more to Chelsea Cardinal for the illustrations that go so well with the story. The illustrations are all black and white, except the foxes – they are in orange and stunning would perhaps be a lesser adjective to use. Saunders’ story is telling of our times – of the way we inhabit spaces and make of them to how endangered our wild life really is – and all of this is said with the eccentric and almost witty (in this one at least), true blue Saunders style.
Fox 8 is heartwarming, also heart-wrenching, makes you look at the world we have made and why and question almost every decision - which I think we must. At the same time, it makes a spot in your heart and will not go away. I am very happy that it was the first read of the year for me. Read it. It is truly beautifully done.
Top reviews from other countries
I was expecting more, especially having read a few reviews which raved about it - the hardback book is small, smaller than A5 and it runs to 42 written pages, most of which have an illustration on them as well. There are three pages given purely to illustration within the book. There are 10 additional pages at the beginning - 5 of which are blank, the rest have the title on them....twice! Also information such as publishing details and authors previous titles. There are 11 additional pages at the back - 9 of which are blank, the rest have details about the author and one about the typeface. This does not include the inside front and back facings. It took me a mere 30 minutes to read my £9.99 book, that equates to about 33p a minute of reading. And for what..........?
The story is about Fox 8 who has learned to speak "Yuman" - it is Fox 8 who provides the narrative in his Yuman-speak language. Written phonetically in places, but elsewhere in perfect English (such a clever fox), portraying how Fox 8 has acquired this skill by listening at the window of a luving Yuman woman reading to her pup, and his experiences of Yumans, which are not in any way particularly pleasant. In itself it is a simple, not even salutary tale, quite dark and depressing in places with no happy ending. In the words of Fox 8 "If you want your Storys to end happy, try being niser"
I guess the message Saunders is attempting to get across here is to respect all animals, even foxes who now live alongside us in our urban settings, yet are often treated with contempt as vermin. You cannot tame the natural world and seen from the perspective of a wild animal it offers a sad counterpoint, seeing its pride in having acquired a skill which it does not really understand.
I cannot say if this is a YA book or an adult book. It is written in the style of a childrens book (I am sure a child could have even written it), but I question, does the underlying message get through to its intended target audience? It is lauded as "darkly comic", but it did not make me smile one little bit. I concluded disappointingly thinking "I spent £9.99 on this load of twaddle and 14 blank sheets of paper?????" the message not lost on me, but thinking "did I spend all that to line this man's pockets only to read the bleeding obvious?"
But then I read the reviews and I'm not surprised at all. They are all looking for deeper hiding means, comparing the style to a million previous weird uses of language and looking for meta-meta-meta-fiction.
My opinion: This is a great little tale, clearly a experiment but one that undeniably works, it had me laughing all the way through, it was actually slightly poignant, and that some people have lost the ability to just enjoy a good story when it's in front of their eyes.
A book to share and read again and again .
However...I did like it...once I got used to the style of writing! It's a story with a message...and I liked its quirkiness...