by Patch O'Furr
Submitted by Fred Patten, Furry’s favorite historian and reviewer.
Persimmon Takes On Humanity, by Christopher Locke
Los Angeles, CA, Fathoming Press, February 2015, trade paperback $14.95 (477 pages), Kindle $1.99.
Persimmon Takes On Humanity is blatantly a didactic novel. But it’s a powerful one. In its first few pages Persimmon, a happy-go-lucky raccoon; Scraps, Persimmon’s younger brother; her reluctant best friend Derpoke the opossum; and Rawly, an arrogant rival raccoon dare each other to venture from the safety of Oak Tree Forest to cross the river to the human land, from which no raccoon has ever returned.
“‘Having fun?’ Rawly, an imposing raccoon, stands over them on his hind legs asserting his dominance. He glares at the playful pals. Derpoke goes limp with fear.
Persimmon lets go of Derpoke and leisurely rolls onto her side to face Rawly. ‘Well, well, well, if it isn’t Grumpykins.’
‘Grumpy?!’ Rawly replies, incensed. ‘How about rightfully annoyed that you’re in my territory – again? You think you can just gallivant around all over my trees?’
‘The forest is big enough for all of use to share,’ Persimmon responds defiantly. ‘I’m not intimidated by the silly rules you males force on everyone around you by rubbing your butts on everything.’
‘The most ridiculous thing about you jumping between those trees is that you were doing it to show off to your puny brother and this cowardly opossum.’
Persimmon pops up, indignant. ‘They both have more heart than all of the other raccoons combined. Besides, I did it to prove to myself that it could be done – and maybe to taste the thrill of it.’
‘Huh. Well, if you warriors are so brave, then why don’t you venture past Oak Tree Forest on the other side of the river?’ Rawly provokes.
‘You’re absurd,’ Persimmon jeers. ‘As if you’re courageous enough to venture there. No raccoon has ever gone past that point and lived to tell the tale.’” (pgs. 4-5)