Red Fox Road by Frances Greenslade

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North American: Penguin Random House Canada Young Readers, Fall 2020
Italy: Keller Editore
Ukraine: Machaon Ukraine


Francis Greenslade | Photo Credit: Stuart Bish
(Photo: Stuart Bish)

Frances Greenslade was born in St. Catharines, Ontario, where she grew up with four sisters and one brother playing among the orchards of the Niagara Peninsula. The family moved to Winnipeg when she was ten. Francie earned an English degree at University of Winnipeg before moving to Vancouver, where she completed an MFA in Creative Writing at UBC in 1992. Francie lives in Penticton, B.C., where she teaches English Literature at Okanagan College. She has published work in several literary magazines as well as two previous memoirs, A Pilgrim in Ireland: A Quest for Home and By the Secret Ladder: A Mother’s Initiation (Penguin, 2002 and 2007). Shelter was shortlisted for the 2012 Evergreen Award and the 2012 Ethel Wilson Fiction Prize. Red Fox Road is her first children’s novel.

Red Fox Road

a middle-grade novel by Frances Greenslade


“Rendered with exquisite sensory detail, this hero’s journey is a resonant read for unsettling times.” —KIRKUS REVIEWS, starred review

“Francie Greenslade is brilliant in her portrayal of the half-suspected world that lies just beyond the senses of every thirteen year old. The book’s a triumph.” — ALAN BRADLEY, author of The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie

Red Fox Road - Canadian cover

Francie Fox has a passion for nature and all things survivalist. She loves camping and hiking, so when her parents surprise her with a family vacation to the Grand Canyon for her thirteenth birthday, she is ecstatic. Finally, she has a chance to test out what she’s learned from her new survival guide. Plus, the early spring chill makes it the perfect time to hike.

But their family vacation gets off to a rocky start when they take a wrong turn and their truck breaks down on an off-road path deep in the Oregon forest. With no phones and no immediate help in sight, Francie’s dad has no choice but to hike to the nearest highway for assistance, leaving her and her mother in the car to wait for him.

Things are fine at first. But as more and more time passes with no sign of her father, Francie’s mom becomes increasingly paranoid until, one morning, Francie wakes up alone with nothing but a note attached to the truck’s windshield. Her mother is gone, though all her belongings are still with Francie. Is this another one of her mental-health episodes? And where is dad with the help he promised to get?

Alone, isolated, and with limited supplies in the dense forest, Francie must rely on the knowledge and skills she has developed in order to survive. And not only must she brave the wilderness, Francie must also confront the truth of her family’s years-long struggle in the wake of her twin sister’s death.

Frances Greenslade channels her inner thirteen-year-old in her first middle-grade novel to create an inspiring tale of a young girl’s strength and resourcefulness.

“The road stretched away from me, a long, narrow ribbon being swallowed by sky. My heart began to thump wildly. Where was everybody? What was taking so long? The balloony feeling of panic shot up from my chest and into my head, making the road, the truck, the sky swim before my eyes. I was alone out here, surrounded by miles and miles of forest. I felt like I was the only one in the whole world.”


Shelter is a beating heart of a book, alive with Greenslade’s fierce imagination, her acute descriptions of the natural world, her sure hand with narrative.”  — TORONTO STAR

“Funny, heartwarming and tragic.”  — OTTAWA CITIZEN

“Greenslade has created two memorable and likable characters in Jenny and Maggie; their bare-bones tale of survival will touch readers, and likely stay with them a long time.”  — THE VANCOUVER SUN

“Exceptional novel… vivid… disarmingly honest….Absorbing, moving, memorable.”  — THE GUARDIAN

“Poignant, tender and vivid, Shelter traces the relationship of two daughters with their missing mother through family stories. Greenslade’s gorgeous landscapes and loving attention to her characters make this journey through loss and survival unforgettable. I was glued to every page.”  — EDEN ROBINSON, author of Monkey Beach

Praise for the work of Frances Greenslade

“Frances Greenslade has a real gift as a teller of stories, and she tells them in the clearest, most accessible prose, so that they flow one into the other. Once I started reading A Pilgrim in Ireland, I was so engrossed that I couldn't stop. Before I knew it, an entire afternoon had flown by.”  — SHARON BUTALA

“[Frances Greenslade] is an accomplished storyteller who demonstrates a deft touch with ironic humour, a rare gift. She also managed to find the perfect voice for this particular piece of work. ”  — THE STAR PHOENIX, SASKATOON

“Weaving back and forth from the land she's standing on to the country that's home, Greenslade takes a look at the things that have made her the person she is, and the things that have made Canada what it is.… Her openness draws us into her trip, making it as much ours as it is hers.”  — THE TORONTO STAR


Red Fox Road - Ukrainian edition




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