Sunday, 8 September 2013

Picture Books

NZ Writer and Illustrator
Gay Hay, illustrated by Margaret Tolland
Watch Out, Snail
Page Break Ltd   2013    $22.00pb     32 pages
ISBN 978 0 4732 2644 2

Themes: NZ forest/ Nighttime in the forest/ Powellliphanta snail

Come into the nighttime New Zealand forest – a dark place where it is eat or be eaten and follow the slimy trail of the Powellliphanta snail as he/she (these snails are hermaphrodites) evades a series of hungry mouths. There are other hungry creatures in the forest  - pigs and rats, hedgehogs and possums – even birds will eat these snails.  Gay Hay has used elegant and lyrical language that is a pleasure to read aloud (and has not fallen into the trap of writing in verse) to tell the story of the snail’s search for a meal. Margaret Tolland has created a dark forest that once you enter it on the first page you simply do not leave again until the dramatic end of the story. The photos of Rod Morris have guided much of the artwork. Three pages of simple information about the snails are included at the end. I feel this is a special book that will be enjoyed and admired.
Preschool up / Age 4 up

I went to the launch  out at Pataka at Porirua last week and took several photos. However, I’m afraid none of them are worth reproducing here – this is due to the ineptitude of the photographer and has nothing to do with the subjects who both looked relaxed and happy – as well they might.

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