The Boy, the Mole, the Fox and the Horse

A few weeks ago, I was in a mall and had time to kill; when, after wandering around for some time, I came across a bookshop. Naturally I decided to pop inside. I wasn’t planning on buying anything, but then I saw the cover of The Boy, the Mole, the Fox and the Horse, and the fox, in particular, caught my eye–anyone who knows me knows that they are my favorite.

I picked it up and leafed through it, not really looking for anything in particular, but I had a sudden urge to get it. Two other books and way too much time later (damn register glitches), I walked away with my new treasures…and what a treasure they have been so far!

(Oh, you can check out the vlog here!)

Charlie Mackesy certainly surprised me with this story. I’m not really sure what I was expecting, even though I had flipped through it previously, but I was pleasantly surprised.

It almost had the air of a children’s picture book, indeed, in the forward, Mackesy says, “I need pictures, they are like islands, places to get to in a sea of words.”

This book, instead, is more like a little stream, constantly making its way around little islands of rock and flora that have been stubborn enough to grow in such a wet environment. There were illustrations on every page, sometimes very few, if any words, and yet, it told a beautiful little story of friendship and love.

In it, there is a boy, and he’s dreadfully lonely; one day, he meets a cake-loving mole who doles out life advice freely–
“What do you think success is?” asked the boy… “To love,” said the mole.

Or, somewhat more humorously–
“If at first you don’t succeed, have some cake.” “I see,” [said the boy] “Does it work?” “Every time.”

Then, the duo meets a fox, and in an act that is reminiscent of Aesop’s “The Lion and the Mouse,” their kindness leads the fox to join their little crew.

Finally, they meet a great horse, who is also very sage–
“Asking for help isn’t giving up,” said the horse. “It’s refusing to give up.”

And so, this little band of four travel together, on a search for home…but they soon realize that they don’t have to look very far at all.

You guys, you simply have to check it out if you can. Between the lovely little story of friendship and the PHENOMENAL illustrations, it’s just so good. Look at this!

I love the simplicity and rawness of the drawings–the splashes of color give it a life of its own too!

This was definitely a lovely little read, and I hope it warms your heart, like it did mine.

That’s all I’ve got for this week! Be sure to look out for my next post on

Happy Reading!


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