One Fox: A Counting Book Thriller

One Fox: A Counting Book Thriller

By Author / Illustrator

Kate Read


Picture Books

Age range(s)



Pan Macmillan




Paperback / softback




One Fox is a stunning counting book and thrilling farmyard adventure from the brilliantly talented author and illustrator, Kate Read.

One famished fox with two sly eyes is on the prowl . . . three plump hens had better watch out!

The rich, close-up illustrations take the reader to the heart of the drama in this exciting story set in a moonlit farmyard. With something different to count in every picture, learning numbers from one to ten has never been so much fun, while the story will keep everyone gripped to the last, hugely satisfying page.

Kate Read is a graduate from the prestigious MA in Children's Book Illustration at Anglia Ruskin University, Cambridge. Her luscious artwork is a mixture of collage, printing and drawing, creating layers of beautiful texture and detail.



I love how One Fox is described as 'a counting book thriller' - which is just what it turns out to be; giving it a lot of scope for being used as more than a counting book.

In the story, one fox, with two 'sly eyes' sees 'three plump hens' (the text gives us both the numbers and the words) - and so it progresses until he enters the hen house... Luckily, 100 angry hens prove to be more than a match for this hungry fox, and we are informed that 'no hens or foxes were harmed in the making of this book' on the final pages.

This picture book is a great story for teaching counting 1-10 as each of the images supports counting out eg Nine flying feathers / Ten sharp teeth - numbers that children are unlikely to forget! But for older children it also invites discussion around what makes the text exciting compared with other kinds of writing, and can be used as a template for children to create their own 'thriller' or suspenseful story - or even just a different kind of counting story.

This is a really clever book, and the painterly illustrations are gorgeous - a real find!

Picture book / Reviewed by Elen Green

Suggested Reading Age 3+


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