Book Review: Pax

Pax by Sara Pennypacker
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

Pax was only a kit when his family was killed, and “his boy” Peter rescued him from abandonment and certain death. When Peter’s father enlists, Peter has to move in with his grandpa, but Pax can’t go. Peter throws Pax’s favorite toy soldier into the woods. When the fox runs to retrieve it, Peter and his dad get back in the car and leave him there—alone. But before Peter makes it through even one night under his grandfather’s roof, regret and duty spur him to action; he packs for a trek to get his best friend back and sneaks into the night. This is the story of Peter, Pax, and their independent struggles to return to one another against all odds. -GoodReads Description


I’m not a huge fan of animal stories (unless they are anthropomorphic), but the writing in this book was so excellently crafted that I loved it!
I especially loved the boy’s story, how he travels across country and the people he meets and connects with. There’s a lot of depth to the story, and the spiritual journey that the boy goes through is just beautiful.
The fox’s story was less compelling. Basic animal survival and a lot of dead things, but it was certainly interesting.

I loved how the story line has a lot of flashbacks, and we gradually learn the history of the fox and the boy, their family life, how they first met, what they value most, etc…
Sometimes a lot of flashbacks can kill a story, but they were so easily and seamlessly woven into the narrative, with important emotional connections to the “now” of the story, that it enhanced the story rather than distracting the reader.

A beautiful and heart-wrenching little story!

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