Book Review: Darling Hedgehog Goes Down a Foxhole by Auralee Arkinsly

Darling Hedgehog goes on an adventure to look for her parents who dropped out of sight.

Carefree, cute, and winning episodes bring Darling and Miss Fox to life. As a read-to-me picture book, for children 4-8 or preschool and kindergarten or as a chapter book for first grade through third grades. This story like Aesop’s Fables or a retelling of Little Red Riding Hood only nicer.

Darling introduces herself to the strange animal who is Miss Fox. Miss Fox gives her gifts so that Darling is distracted from her mission. The two animals look for things to do together in fantastical attempts to be friendly. When Darling enters Miss Fox’s kitchen, she realizes that by nature, not all strangers are good for you. Will Darling save the day when it’s already dinner time?

Darling Hedgehog learns about the animal nature of things in high humor and carefree, cute, and winning episodes. Learn about opposites, homophones, and similes as two animals in nature roll into fantasy land. For children 4-8 or preschool and kindergarten, as a read-to-me picture book, and first grade and second grade as a chapter book.

Pictures similar to Charlotte’s Web and the Mercy Watson series are characterized and painted in full-color, though the pages are set up like a chapter book.

This book helps to train children in natural wisdom, analysis, and discernment. It helps to balance the teachings of acceptance of everyone and friendliness to all. There may be good purposes for everyone to exist under heaven, yet all purposes may not be good for a child. So, beware, and flee from crafty foxes especially when they are holding your parents in the pantry.

My Review

I chose to read this book after receiving a free e-copy. All opinions in this review are my own and completely unbiased.

Darling the Hedgehog is looking for her parents and ends up falling down a foxhole. She meets Miss Fox who says she hasn’t seen Darling’s parents but gives Darling a gift (a tutu). Miss Fox keeps calling her Dumpling instead of Darling but being a naive youngster, Darling doesn’t realize why. It takes finding her parents in Miss Fox’s pantry to make her realize that she can’t trust Miss Fox.

This is a good story to teach children not to trust strangers. I was a little uncomfortable thinking about reading this to my grandson. While I do think it’s important to teach children about those who are “sly as a fox,” I think parents should read this story with a child and explain it as they read along; otherwise, it may turn out to be very scary for certain youngsters. It also teaches about hedgehogs’ spines which might encourage a child to learn more about them.

While some of the illustrations are a bit odd, most of them are bright, colorful, and cute.

I do think Darling Hedgehog Goes Down a Foxhole is a good book for parents to read to children and explain as they go along.

Cute hedgehog
Sly fox

About the Author

Auralee Arkinsly writes in good humor about serious subjects because kids of all ages can learn a lot from laughing. Since opposites exist, she believes children can learn to identify the nature of things and get out of a risky situation. “Good Laughter sparks the mind.” She reckons if she can save some from the bumps and bruises, then she has done a good day’s work.

Darling Hedgehog Goes Down a Foxhole is her first early reader chapter book full of lush illustrations, illustrations which she wooed from a highly gifted 9th grader by offering good trade in exchange for the artist’s first published works.

Find author’s bling/swag at

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