Norman the Slug with the Silly Shell

Sue Hendra. Aladdin, $14.99 (32p) ISBN 978-1-4814-9032-0
As a slug, Norman admires the patterned shells on snails’ backs. And who can blame him? In Hendra’s vivid illustrations, their shells are as bright and enticing as peppermint candies. But the snails have no interest in Norman. When he inadvertently ruins a game they are playing, one snail sniffs, “This only works if you’ve got a shell.” Norman takes this as a challenge and tries on a variety of potential shells: a tennis ball proves “too bouncy,” an alarm clock is “too noisy,” and a worm-infested apple is “already taken.” Norman gets the snails’ seal of approval after he straps a pink-frosted doughnut with sprinkles to his back (“Ta-da! A shell!”)—until a bird swoops down and snatches the doughnut, with Norman still attached. Though Norman has been unhappy with his identity throughout the book, he uses his innate slug talent to escape: “He made slime—lots and lots of it!” Don’t look for just-be-yourself messages here: Hendra (Dragon Jelly) ends with a goofy scene that indicates that Norman isn’t done trying out life as other creatures. Ages 4–8. (Dec.)
Reviewed on: 10/02/2017
Release date: 12/12/2017
Genre: Children's
Ebook - 32 pages - 978-0-85707-637-3
Paperback - 32 pages - 978-1-84738-976-3
Hardcover - 26 pages - 978-1-4711-2040-4
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