Friday, April 14, 2017

Escargot by Dashka Slater and Sydney Hanson

Hello, Dashka Slater! Thank you for visiting Watch. Connect. Read. to chat with me about Escargot, Sydney Hanson, picture books, and reading. 

Dashka Slater: I’m delighted to be here!

I am delighted you are here. Let's get started! 



Escargot is a very beautiful French snail who wants to be your favorite animal. He spent many years as a puppet who accompanied me on visits to schools, libraries and bookstores, but finally insisted on having a book of his own.

Sydney Hanson’s illustrations are straight-up adorable. Escargot feels she did an excellent job of capturing his joie-de-vivre and his je-ne-sais-quoi and also his beautiful shell, neck and tentacles. No snail has ever been cuter!


Illustration Credit: Sydney Hanson
Carrots have the habit of unexpectedly turning up in otherwise-excellent salads. Escargot has a few tricks up his sleeve for when they do. He makes a very fierce face and waits for them to flee, for example. But occasionally this doesn’t work. Then he needs help from the reader.

Picture books are a magical duet between artist and writer in which both are telling the same story in different ways. No other form is as challenging or as rewarding to me as a writer – and nothing is as enchanting to me as a reader.


Illustration Credit: Sydney Hanson
Reading is the only way I know to live the lives of other people, travel to magical places, battle terrible monsters, and form a deep and lasting friendship with an extraordinarily handsome French snail. All without getting dirty or needing a passport. 

Mr. Schu, you should have asked me if Escargot has a national holiday in his honor. And the answer is: mais oui! National Escargot Day is May 24 and Escargot suggests you celebrate by eating… a nice salad with a few croutons and a light vinaigrette. (And if you want to have an Escargot party, complete with tentacles for all the guests, download the Escargot story hour kit.) 



Borrow Escargot from your school or public library. Whenever possible, please support independent bookshop. 

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