The day that Charlie got stuck in the loo was the day he decided he wanted to become rich. It definitely had to be something to do with money; something that would make him lots of money so that the house he lived in with his Mum, his brother Zak and their Japanese language student Natsuko, could be renovated. He was sick of living in a crumbling house with door knobs that fell off in your hand, not to mention peeling paint in the loo and the smell from all the stinking farts.
Charlie’s Mum got very excited showing him six brown snails straggling along the kitchen bench. Charlie suddenly saw fame and fortune at his fingertips. He could become famous like TV chef Pierre Pascal (Pierre was sprinkling salt onto skinned frogs legs). Shiny pink legs with long spindly toes. They began jiggling like they were swimming. The chef said salt gets an electric current going in frogs’ nerves (they have to be freshly dead) and that makes the muscles contract.
Charlie wondered if snails danced if you put salt on them and whatever would frogs and snails taste like? He could become a cooking star like Pierre Pascal, driving a flash car and making millions.
The school computer was the best place to start looking for recipes for preparing his snails for cooking. The only problem it took ages to warm up. When he could finally could get into googling “Cooking Snails” what came up really surprised him. Heck, people really do eat snails.
This is a fantastic book. Common garden snails for cooking? Not something that the average child would think up, but imagination is wonderful. Spells, potions and other interesting things enrich this story. A well-told tale.
Reviewed by Christine Frayling
Snails, Spells and Snazzlepops
by Robyn Cooper
Published by Makaro Press