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“Fox & I: an uncommon friendship” by Catherine Raven

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Fox & I: an uncommon friendship

Catherine Raven
Published: 2021
Genre: Non-Fiction

In an isolated mountain valley in Montana, Catherine Raven and a wild red fox meet, and gradually become friends.   Does it remind you of “The Little Prince” by Antoine Saint-Exupéry?  Raven must have thought the same because she spent some time reading that book to Fox, and makes some comparisons between her and Saint-Exupéry.  But this is a completely different story…

After working as a ranger in national parks and getting her PhD in biology, Raven bought and built a home on land in Montana.  One afternoon a fox, that Raven named Fox, showed up.  Raven decided to try to grab his attention by showing him various objects that she collected in her pocket, such as stones, seeds, feathers, etc.  Fox became a regular visitor and enjoyed watching and listening to Raven.

At the beginning, Raven kept this new friendship secret because as a biologist she wasn’t sure it was ok to become friends with a wild animal.  She decided to make Fox a research subject.  She would collect data about Fox, but not become his friend.  Easier to say than to do.  Especially when Fox became a dad and introduced his kits to Raven.

What happens in the end with Fox, I won’t tell you.  But I will tell you that Fox changed Raven’s life. As she describes it: “A long time ago, I had arrived at the prudent and logical conclusion that when your own parents don’t want you, no one else will. So I had been living a solitary life.”  But Fox changed that…

On the cover of the book there’s a quote by Yann Martel (author of Life of Pi): “If Thoreau had read The Little Prince, he would have written Fox and I”.  That alone convinced me to read this book.  Hope you do too…