How to Find a Fox

h1 October 15th, 2021 by jules

“… amber eyes”
(Click spread to enlarge)


You all remember Kate Gardner’s Lovely Beasts: The Surprising Truth (2018), illustrated by Heidi Smith. Right? (It even won Heidi the 2019 Bull-Bransom Award from the National Museum of Wildlife Art.) Gardner is back with a book about foxes and, delightfully, it is filled with photography. How to Find A Fox (Running Press Kids, September 2021) features photographs by wildlife photographer Ossi Saarinen, and it is one of this year’s best picture books.

Gardner writes in a direct, second-person voice: “If you want to find a fox, you can look in the forest ….” But you can also look in the meadow or city. And you can look in the morning or afternoon — but “dawn and dusk are best.” You can look in spring, summer, autumn, or even winter. Though it may sound like foxes are easy to spot — and Gardner lays this all out in well-paced text that builds tension with page turns — one must still be patient to find them. “You must be willing to wait … and wait.” In a closing note, Saarinen addresses his luck in spotting and photographing foxes — but only because he learned, in his years of photographing wildlife, to be patient and still: “If I remain quiet, calm, and respectful of their space, the animals become accustomed to seeing me and are not afraid.”

Lucky for us, Saarinen was remarkably patient in getting these vivid photographs that capture foxes in various settings. The crisp, stunning full-bleed photos, many of them evocatively lit, bring readers an intimate look at these beautiful creatures all throughout the year, and in many spreads Gardner includes small text that incorporates information about the habitats, hunting tendencies, physical features, and tracks of foxes (and more). Nary a human appears in these pages; we take a deep dive into the world of foxes and get rare glimpses of these wild creatures, often very difficult to spot. (Bonus images include beguiling shots of a duck, a squirrel, magnificent autumn foliage, and much more.) Saarinen has a brilliant way with the camera. It’s a mesmerizing book. (I mean, just look at that cover!)

Here are some spreads so that you can see for yourself. …



Two images above: Click either one to see spread in its entirety



Two images above: Click either one to see spread in its entirety


(Click cover to enlarge)


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HOW TO FIND A FOX. Text copyright © 2021 by Kate Gardner. Photography copyright © 2021 by Ossi Saarinen. Cover copyright © 2021 by Hachette Book Group, Inc. Images reproduced by permission of the publisher, Running Press Kids, New York.

4 comments to “How to Find a Fox

  1. This is so gorgeous and love the prose with facts included. This one is definitely going to be a present for some of the younger humans on my Christmas list, with an extra copy for me!

    Oh! And the photographer is on Instagram if you want to check out some of his photos of other animals.
    His account is @sooseli

  2. Correction – his account is @soosseli – forgot the second “s”

  3. I saw that yesterday, Rachel, and meant to follow. But I forgot! Thanks for this reminder.

  4. Thanks…just ordered it for my school library

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