Baby book review: Fox and Chick: The Quiet Boat Ride and Other Stories by Sergio Ruzzier

Baby librarian Tilly and her mum Jen review the early reader Fox and Chick: The Quiet Boat Ride and Other Stories.

Cover of Fox and Chick: The Quiet Boat Ride

Tilly reviews The Quiet Boat Ride

I’m not so sure about this book. Mummy and Daddy both laugh a lot and seem to really like it but I don’t get it. I like the pictures, though. There’s an animal that I think looks like a woof but Mummy says is a fox, and one that looks a bit like a duck (I know lots of ducks because I have lots of duck books) but Mummy says is a chick. Sure, Mummy. The book doesn’t rhyme but the stories have a good amount of words, so that is a plus. Mummy says that this is a book for when I’m older BUT she also says I’m a big girl now. Mixed messages, Mummy.

Jen reviews The Quiet Boat Ride

Tilly and The Quiet Boat Ride
Sometimes we read at the dinner table.

So this isn’t a book for Tilly just yet (it’s really more suited to the 5–8 crowd), but it’s my favourite children’s book of the year so far so it’s getting a review here. I admit, when I first looked at the book, I had my doubts. I generally don’t like comics or graphic novels (except for the Baby-Sitters Club graphic novels) because I never know whether I should read the text first or look at the pictures, and I can’t do both at once. I also don’t typically like short stories because I want to be sucked into a fully fleshed out novel. So I didn’t expect to think too highly of this. Imagine my surprise when I loved every single story in this book. There are three stories in this collection that depict three different adventures of Fox and Chick, and I love them all. This is the book where I’ve memorised certain lines, think about them to myself and random points during the day, and giggle. Thinking about this book makes me happy.

The first book in the Fox and Chick series, The Party and Other Stories, was recently awarded a Theodor Seuss Geisel Honor at the American Library Association Youth Media Awards. That collection is similarly charming and funny and delightful, but I like The Quiet Boat Ride more. Which is to say, if you haven’t read either of them, quick sticks! Go to your library or bookshop and get copies of both! And if you have read The Party and Other Stories and loved it, definitely get yourself a copy of The Quiet Boat Ride because it only gets better.

If you want to read more about the books and author, I also interviewed Sergio Ruzzier about his writing, published here.

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