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Author: Rowe, Thereza
When Penelope the Fox drops her heart into the sea, she's swept off on a perilous journey dodging sharks and royal cat-guards, until a cartwheeling chicken leads her to the land of lost things.
Kirkus Reviews (01/01/14)
School Library Journal (03/01/14)
Full Text Reviews:
Booklist - 02/01/2014 TOON Books seems to be scouring the globe for cartoonists with a sensibility that will infuse sequential art with new perspective and style. Their latest find, the Brazilian British Rowe, brings an unusually bold sense of design to an uncommonly surreal story. When her astronaut beau rockets off, a tall and elegant fox loses her broken heart in the ocean. She dives in after it and rescues it from a shark only to have a playful dolphin whisk it away. So begins a whirlwind pursuit steeped in dream logic, involving a paper airplane, a horse, archers, and double-decker buses. Finally, a rooster ushers her into the garden of lost things, which allows the fox to make a final sacrifice and affords her heart a quiet, poetic rebirth. Sparsely worded, the narrative meshes seamlessly with the aesthetic in a dreamlike fantasy that might be obscure to the youngest end of its intended audience, but Rowe’s use of strong, recognizable shapes and clear, powerful visual metaphors will keep imaginative kids mesmerized. - Copyright 2014 Booklist.
School Library Journal - 03/01/2014 K-Gr 3—This comic, with its limited vocabulary for emergent readers, has a complex, mystical story line, which will also appeal to older children. Penelope, a fox with a broken heart, pursues that heart through water and air. Encountering cat guards at a palace, she leaps on a black horse with a red mane, retrieves her heart, and loses it as a spear carries it away. Then the fox is in a city, sobbing on a park bench before catching a double-decker red bus. A chicken, who has danced on the bus roof, takes her to the garden of lost things, where they find the heart but encounter a monster. Penelope sacrifices her heart to save her new friend. Cut-paper illustrations feature flat colors and clean lines. The visual narrative flows through large and small panels, where speech bubbles and sound effects are used sparingly but to great effect. For instance, "BUM BA DUM…BUM BA DUM" appears in two crescents, emphasizing the heart shape of the palace while also mimicking a beating heart. Youngsters will return to this tale of old and new friendship and loss, finding in Penelope's experiences something that speaks to their own hearts. An author's note discusses the story's origin, while endpapers addressed to parents and teachers give tips for reading comics with kids. An unusual and unique choice for all libraries.—Mary Jean Smith, formerly at Southside Elementary School, Lebanon, TN - Copyright 2014 Publishers Weekly, Library Journal and/or School Library Journal used with permission.