Author: Dashka Slater
Illustrator: Sydney Hanson
Published: Macmillan Publishing Group, 2017
Happy new year, you guys! Can you believe it’s 2020? I’m having a hard time with it. Wasn’t it just 2010? Wasn’t it just 2000? Wasn’t it just 1990? Wasn’t…well, okay, I can’t go back a lot further than that, because I was a kid in the eighties…and didn’t exist before then.
But still. Life is going by very fast. Very fast indeed. Which is why it’s time to slow right down with a snail-themed book! Meet Escargot, the cutest little snail on the block. I took this book out of the library based on a few reviews I saw online. I read it to Lily one day while we were waiting for Vivi to join us for lunch. (Lily was out of school a LOT in December because of an ongoing cold…which, thankfully, has cleared up. And will probably return next week, as soon as she goes back to school. Sigh.) Lily absolutely, positively, 100% LOVED the book. And so did Vivi! Why? Let me break it down:
- Escargot is adorable. He has a little ascot! He has a striped shirt and beret! What more do you want in a snail?
- He has the sweetest little personality. All he wants is to be your favourite animal – and he’s willing to show you how great a choice a snail is. They make shiny little shimmer trails! They are fearless! They’re kinda speedy! OK, so maybe not those last two. But Escargot has a healthy self-image because…
- Escargot knows that he’s beautiful. In fact, he’s absolutely fine if you’d like to give him a kiss. Or stroke his shell. Or anything, really. He just wants a friend.
- The whole story takes us on a journey to a salad at the end of the book – and although Escargot isn’t delighted by the carrots in said salad, he’s willing to try one if the reader is game.
- When you finally reach the end of the book, Escargot eats the salad at record speed and, well, you the reader don’t get any. But that’s okay! And it’s also okay that you might not choose a snail as a favourite animal, because Escargot loves you anyway.
Aw! It’s so rare to find a book this pure-hearted. It’s just lovely from start to finish. Lily is desperate for a copy to add to our library (I think she really wants to pat and/or kiss the pages, and feels like a library book has to be treated a little more carefully than that). I’m going to pick up a copy for her birthday. She’ll love it! And so will you. Escargot is wonderful (and, honestly, if snails actually had tiny neck-scarves and berets, they would 100% be my favourite animal).
Lily’s review: I wish Escargot was our pet.
Vivi’s review: Hey, yeah! We could have a snail pet. No one is allergic to snails, right?
Mama’s review: 5/5 tiny ascots.