Snail Trail by Ziggy Hanaor, illustrated by Christos Kourtoglou. Cicada Books, 2023. 9781800660311
Rating: 1-5 (5 is an excellent or a Starred review) 5
Format: Hardcover picture book
What did you like about the book? Not all who wander are lost, and not all who like solitude are lonely. This is the tale of a happy snail named Marjorie who likes to “wander off and try to find a quiet space.” Friends are always following her to see if she wants company or to share a snack. But Marjorie just likes to be alone. One day she finds a friend who is similarly enjoying some alone time, and she finds out how he prevents others from following him – by wiping his slime trail with a leaf. From then on, Marjorie and Bernard are kindred spirits who sometimes have alone time together, but who always know to respect each other’s space. And from then on she always carries a leaf.
I loved this book about an introvert who finds a way to get what she needs. The matter-of-fact exposition and the immensely appealing water color art work wonderfully together. Kourtoglou’s free form artwork is adorable. The blobby snails with shocks of hair, glasses and hats are so funny, their eyes so expressive. I won’t soon forget an image of Marjorie the snail reclining under a bush, with pensive eyes, contemplating a rose, a long trail of slime tracing her path. This book is a funny and a useful validation of the joy of solitude. It’s a good tool for showing kids how to give their friends space.
Anything you didn’t like about it? No
To whom would you recommend this book? For ages 5 and up. I can imagine preschool and kindergartens using the book to talk about difference.
Who should buy this book? Elementary school and public libraries
Where would you shelve it ? Picture books
Should we (librarians/readers) put this on the top of our “to read” piles? Near the top
Reviewer’s Name, Library (or school), City and State: Stephanie Tournas, Robbins Library, Arlington, MA
Date of review: February 6, 2023
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