The Treasure Hunt

Children - Animals
26 Pages
Reviewed on 03/17/2024
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    Book Review

Reviewed by Asher Syed for Readers' Favorite

The Treasure Hunt, written and illustrated by Aspen Zahursky, is the story of a treasure map that brings four of the most unlikely companions together without them even realizing it. The book begins with a little fox whose family has relocated to a new area, and whose boredom is broken when she happens to find a random treasure map. Her hope is that the treasure is a ball to play with, but it takes her to a skunk. The skunk threatens to stink Fox up but then accepts an offer to join Fox, hoping the treasure is perfume. The map then leads to a bear cave, where Skunk threatens Bear until Fox intervenes and invites Bear to join. Bear hopes the treasure is honey. Finally, the map leads Fox, Skunk, and Bear to a river where they meet Otter. Otter offers assistance and when he brings up a treasure chest, the true gift is unexpected.

The Treasure Hunt is a super cute little story that reminds me of when my daughter was eight and she'd create these incredible fantasies from a spur-of-the-moment burst of imagination. I imagine I am partly reminded of this because the author and illustrator, Aspen Zahursky, is actually eight years old herself. It's important for me to point out that I have read plenty of books written by other young children and I do not treat the review differently at all. I am genuinely, and sometimes heartbreakingly, consistent on what is expected in children's literature because in the hands of other children, it must be properly written to the highest literary standard, it must have a plot and a meaningful message, and it must enrich beyond simply being a fun story without substance. Zahursky hits all of these square on the head. This is a well written, well edited story with a complete arc that follows a strong plot, and the message is clear, concise and meaningful. Even better, the illustrations are colorful, age-appropriate, and beautifully original. Overall, this is an excellent read for children by a talented child author. Very highly recommended.