Jenn Reese Writer, Artist, Geek

A Game of Fox & Squirrels

A Game of Fox & Squirrels by Jenn Reese

a stunning, heartbreaking novel about a girl who finds the light in the darkness… and ultimately discovers the true meaning of home.”

After an incident shatters their family, eleven-year old Samantha and her older sister Caitlin are sent to live in rural Oregon with an aunt they’ve never met. Sam wants nothing more than to go back to the way things were… before she spoke up about their father’s anger.

When Aunt Vicky gives Sam a mysterious card game called “A Game of Fox & Squirrels,” Sam falls in love with the animal characters, especially the charming trickster fox, Ashander. Then one day Ashander shows up in Sam’s room and offers her an adventure and a promise: find the Golden Acorn, and Sam can have anything she desires.

But the fox is hiding rules that Sam isn’t prepared for, and her new home feels more tempting than she’d ever expected. As Sam is swept up in the dangerous quest, the line between magic and reality grows thin. If she makes the wrong move, she’ll lose far more than just a game.

Cover and interior illustrations by Jessica Roux

ISBN: 1250243017
ISBN13: 9781250243010


What folks are saying…

Winner, Oregon Book Award
Winner, Oregon Spirit Book Award
Finalist, Mythopoeic Award
Finalist, Andre Norton Award

An NPR Best Book of 2020
One of A Mighty Girl’s 2020 Books of the Year
One of Los Angeles Public Library’s Best Books of 2020
An Evanston Public Library Best of the Year Pick

Beautifully written… stunningly effective…
Starred Review
[A] poignant fantastical allegory [that] presents
generational trauma and its echoes unflinchingly.
Publishers Weekly
Starred review
Brings to life, viscerally, what it is like to live in fear of abuse–even after the abuse itself is over. But there is magic here too, and the promise of a better future that comes with learning to let people who care about you into your world.
Alan Gratz
New York Times-bestselling author of Refugee
Magically creative and deeply honest, A Game of Fox & Squirrels merges games and grimness in a fantasy tale that tells the truth.
Elana K. Arnold
Printz Honor-winning author of Damsel and A Boy Called Bat 
A captivating and touching story . . . Both whimsical and emotionally—sometimes frighteningly—compelling.
Ingrid Law
Newbery Honor-winning author of Savvy 
Once in an age, you read a book that is so true and so lovely that it’s as if your own bruised and hopeful heart had come sailing into your hands in book form. A Game of Fox & Squirrels is that book for me.
Anne Nesbet
Author of The Cabinet of Earths and Daring Darleen
A Game of Fox & Squirrels overflows with courage, and it’s willing to share.
William Alexander
National Book Award-winning author of Goblin Secrets
Hauntingly beautiful, funny, dark and true, and so full of magic and heart. This story will stay with me forever.
Stephanie Burgis
Author of The Dragon with a Chocolate Heart
Jenn Reese is masterful in her delicate rendering of a vulnerable child navigating the boundaries of family loyalty. The story will quietly burrow its way into the hearts of the children who need it… Unforgettable.
Tracy Holczer
Author of Everything Else in the Universe
An important, moving book about resilience in the face of abuse, and about emerging from a very dark place into hope.
Sarah Prineas
Author of Trouble in the Stars and The Magic Thief
The way Jenn Reese illuminates a path to hope through dark times is what makes this book essential reading.
Greg van Eekhout
Author of Voyage of the Dogs and Cog

Jenn Reese Writer, Artist, Geek

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