Reviews /

The Slug and The Snail

Authored by Oein DeBhairduin
Illustrated by Olya Anima
Published by Little Island

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We all live in the same world, we all experience that same world though in a different way.

The Slug and the Snail is a tale of two young slugs who explore the world in their own way without a worry or a care about anything. They were free to explore the world, they had no chains to bind them, they simply admired the beauty of the world. One day they met a crow who made them question the world. The tale splits as one of the slugs feels that it should have to follow the advice of the crow whereas the other stays firm in their view of where their home is. The end of the story is a moral lesson for us all to follow in appreciating the difference of others.

This book is a wonderful, sensitive exploration of a tale rooted in the Irish Traveller community, where the ideas of what home is to different people can be explored. The story carefully explores the way that others may shape our views without always respecting the traditions of those around us. The way that Oein DeBhairduin constructs the tale wraps the reader in a natural world of different viewpoints on how all of us live together but different in the same world. The story is easily accessible to readers with its vibrant imagery beautifully illustrated by Olya Anima.

The story deserves a place on every classroom bookshelf, especially for reading aloud. It is the perfect heartwarming tale of appreciating that we all have different opinions and life stories. This book would suit all ages due to the nature of the discussion that I am sure would ensue. I think that questions around where home actually is, what a home is to different people and what it would mean to belong to a home would easily be suited with this wonderful story. It poses questions for us adults to on how we can sometimes unfairly push our judgement on others based on our life experiences too.

Longlisted for the Klaus Flugge Prize 2024