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The Tale of Mr. Tod

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The Tale of Mr. Tod is a children's book written and illustrated by Beatrix Potter, first published by Frederick Warne & Co. in 1912. The tale is about a badger called Tommy Brock and his arch enemy Mr. Tod, a fox. Brock kidnaps the children of Benjamin Bunny and his wife Flopsy, intending to eat them, and hides them in an oven in the home of Mr. Tod. Benjamin and his cousin Peter Rabbit have followed Tommy Brock in an attempt to rescue the babies. When Mr. Tod finds Brock asleep in his bed, he determines to get him out of the house. His initial attempt fails, and the two eventually come to blows. Under cover of the fight, the rabbits rescue the baby rabbits. The tale was influenced by the Uncle Remus stories, and was set in the fields of Potter's Castle Farm. Black and white illustrations outnumber those in colour. The tale is critically considered one of Potter's "most complex and successful in plot and tone."Potter's publisher wanted Mr. Tod to be the first in a new series of Peter Rabbit tales in larger formats with elaborate bindings, but Potter disliked the idea. Nonetheless, Mr. Tod and its 1913 follower, The Tale of Pigling Bland, were published in the new formats, but the idea was eventually dropped and the ordinary bindings were adopted for reprints. The two tales were the last completely original productions by Potter. She continued to publish sporadically but used decades-old concepts and sketches rather than new images and ideas. In 1995, an animated film adaptation of the tale was featured on the BBC television anthology series The World of Peter Rabbit and Friends.
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