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Xo, Ox : A Love Story
by Adam Rex and Scott Campbell


Overview -

Dear Gazelle,

For some time now I have wanted to write a letter to say how much I admire you. You are so graceful and fine. Even when you are running from tigers you are like a ballerina who is running away from tigers.

I think that what I'm trying to say is that I love you.  Read more...


 
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More About Xo, Ox by Adam Rex; Scott Campbell
 
 
 
Overview

Dear Gazelle,

For some time now I have wanted to write a letter to say how much I admire you. You are so graceful and fine. Even when you are running from tigers you are like a ballerina who is running away from tigers.

I think that what I'm trying to say is that I love you.

XO,
OX

And so begins an epic, if initially unrequited, love affair between a graceful gazelle and a clumsy, hapless ox. Romance will never be the same.

Adam Rex's hilarious, sweet, and at times heartbreaking letters between a hopelessly romantic ox and a conceited, beautiful gazelle are paired perfectly with Scott Campbell's joyful illustrations to bring you a romance for the ages.

A Neal Porter Book


 
Details
  • ISBN-13: 9781626722880
  • ISBN-10: 1626722889
  • Publisher: Roaring Brook Press
  • Publish Date: January 2017
  • Page Count: 40
  • Reading Level: Ages 4-8
  • Dimensions: 11.1 x 8.6 x 0.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 0.95 pounds


Related Categories

Books > Juvenile Fiction > Humorous Stories
Books > Juvenile Fiction > Love & Romance
Books > Juvenile Fiction > Animals - Deer, Moose & Caribou

 
Publishers Weekly Reviews

Publishers Weekly® Reviews

  • Reviewed in: Publishers Weekly, page .
  • Review Date: 2016-10-17
  • Reviewer: Staff

Shes a famous, glamorous, and vain gazelle. Hes a salt-of-the-earth ox with a gift for plainspoken eloquence. Their journey toward romance is a rocky one, captured by Rex (How This Book Was Made) and Campbell (Hug Machine) through an epistolary format and luscious sepia-toned watercolors. Ox begins the correspondence with a declaration of love that seems like it would melt the hardest of hearts: Even when you are running from tigers you are like a ballerina who is running from tigers. Gazelle, who swans around her mansion in a wardrobe befitting a 1930s movie star, is unmoved and sends back a form letter and autographed picturetwice (I have many admirers and cannot reply to each one personally). But Ox persists (in a non-stalkery way, it should be noted), and his good-humored self-awareness and unflagging devotion eventually win her over. Rex and Campbell dont end with a romantic clinch, but with delicate evidence of Gazelles changed heartthough the endpapers will satisfy diehard romantics. Its about as lovely (and funny) a story of opposites attracting that one could ask for. Ages 48. Agent: Steven Malk, Writers House. (Jan.)

 
BookPage Reviews

A hilarious little love story

It may be only January, but at year’s end, we’ll look back on this picture book as one of 2017’s funniest.

On the book’s title page spread, we see an ox traipsing along, sniffing a rose, and in the sky the clouds form the dramatic image of a graceful gazelle. Yep, Ox is smitten. Thus this epistolary story begins. Ox sits in his bedroom, an image of the beautiful gazelle on his wall, and writes his first letter, declaring his love for her in no uncertain terms. The entire book consists of their correspondence brought to life in Scott Campbell’s earth-toned, relaxed-line illustrations, though the gazelle’s first two letters—because she is such a stah, dahling—are impersonal form letters. Ox, however, doesn’t seem to notice: “This is an amazing coincidence! I have written you two letters, and both times you have written back using the exact same words!”

There’s so much humor here, all of it in Adam Rex’s trademark gloriously understated style. When Gazelle writes (clearly fishing for compliments) that she has many faults, Ox naively responds that she really has only one or two. When she scolds him, he responds with heartfelt thanks, calling her the “unflattering light of my life.” His intentions may be sincere, but he unknowingly stumbles with his words and she becomes exasperated. Love conquers all, though—even narcissism. Gazelle falls for Ox in a deliciously mysterious open ending, in the form of an unfinished letter. The final endpapers show the happy couple in a series of spot illustrations.

This is a book to fall in love with.

 

Julie Danielson features authors and illustrators at Seven Impossible Things Before Breakfast, a children’s literature blog.

This article was originally published in the January 2017 issue of BookPage. Download the entire issue for the Kindle or Nook.

 
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