February 10, 2012

Perfect Picture Book Friday - Slugs In Love

You know, I just LOVE Perfect Picture Book Friday!  All week I've been downright tingly with excitement because I'm going to share arguably one of the best love stories ever.  Are you ready?  It involves slugs.  What's not to love? :)

Slugs In Love
Written By: Susan Pearson
Illustrated By: Kevin O'Malley
Marshall Cavendish Children's Books, November 2006, Fiction
Suitable For: ages 4-8
Themes/Topics: love, friendship, perseverance, humor, Valentines Day
Opening:  "Marylou loved everything about Herbie - how his slime trail glistened in the dark, how he could stretch himself thin to squeeze inside the cellar window, how he always found the juiciest tomato.  Though she never spoke a single word to him - she was too shy - she thought about Herbie every morning and every night and most of the hours in between.


On Monday, while she grazed in the strawberry patch, Herbie filled her mind and a love poem filled her heart.  She wrote it in slime on the watering can."

Brief Synopsis:  (From Publishers Weekly) "Herbie keeps finding Marylou's poems, etched in slug slime and full of devotion, but Marylou keeps missing the longing letters he writes in return.  While she watches his every move, he can't find anyone who knows where she is so he can meet her."  How will the "slime-crossed" lovers ever meet?

Links To Resources:  Cool Facts About Slugs, Doorknob Valentine, Finger Puppet Valentine - (and with a little ingenuity, the last two could incorporate slugs! :))  Kids could make up their own poems like Herbie and Marylou.

Why I Like This Book:  It's sweet and it's funny.  It's maybe not technically a Valentines Day book (as in, it's not about Valentines Day) it is about love/friendship on a level that I think kids can relate to.  Because Marylou and Herbie can't seem to connect, there's the added fun of rooting for the heroes. And the art complements the story perfectly.  It's so wonderful - really, I think it takes a genius to make slugs look so expressive :)

For the complete list of books with resources, please visit Perfect Picture Books.

Now then.  I hope you're all geared up for our Valentines Day Contest which opens tomorrow!  Having spent some time (I'm not saying days, but, seriously, days!) trying to come up with my sample entry, I am deeply regretting setting the 150 word limit.  Kudos to any of you who pull it off!  After extensive MERCILESS cutting mine is only down to 178.  I realize that I tend to the verbose, so maybe no one else is having a problem.  But if you're struggling, I've decided to up the word limit to 200.  Because it's Valentines Day and all about sharing the love, right? :)  So a little recap on the contest guidelines:

A children's story, poetry or prose, maximum 200 words, about unlikely Valentines, posted on your blog (or in the comment section of mine) between Saturday February 11 and Monday February 13 at 5 PM EST.  Add your entry-specific link to the link list on my blog so we can all come read your entries!  There will be no new post on Monday so the link list will stay up.  Instead, I will have a hitherto unheard of Tuesday post to celebrate Valentines Day, and that post will list 3 finalists (or possibly a couple more - you know how bad I am at choosing :)) for you all to vote on.  The winner will be announced on Friday February 17 and will receive his/her choice of a copy of Ann Whitford Paul's Writing Picture Books: A Hands-On Guide From Story Creation To Publication or a picture book ms critique from yours truly.

See you tomorrow with Valentines stories.  I can't wait to read yours and I sincerely hope there will be more than one entry :)

And now, since I forgot last night - SO SORRY everyone, please blame the fever :) - here is the link list for this weeks Perfect Picture Books.

Reactions:

80 comments:

  1. I think those are the sweetest itty bitty slugs I've ever seen! That opening is so sweet! And what great names. Those illustrations look perfect, Susanna. Great one! On my list. :-)

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  2. Slugs in Love, how adorable for v-day Susanna! I love funny books with heros. Thanks for sharing.

    If my link doesn't add mine is called - Milo Armadillo
    http://jennyleeyoung.blogspot.com/2012/02/perfect-picture-book-friday-milo.html

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  3. Hi Susannah,
    Love your choice...who would think of writing a love story about slugs. :) And the activity and resource ideas sound great.
    I'm also excited about the Unlikely Valentine contest. I'm going to go over mine now and check for spelling. :)
    One question...I don't see the linky for PPBF...am I missing it? Here is the link to my contribution: http://viviankirkfield.wordpress.com/2012/02/10/perfect-picture-book-fridays-little-toot/
    Thank you so much!







    I'm

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  4. Love your PPBF selection, Susanna! I love the etched in slime love poems! I didn't see the link for PPBF -- I'll check again tomorrow. In the meantime, I chose Library Lion.
    http://pentoprint.blogspot.com.

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  5. That slug book is so cute. I love it! I've only written one draft of a rubbish entry for that competition. I'd better look for it and either make it better or whip up another one. The clock is ticking. Have a lovely weekend Susanna.

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  6. By the way, where do we link our Perfect Picture Book posts today? Is Linky on a Valentines with Linka lol? ;)

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  7. Oh, I have this book but I've never read it! I'll have to do that, and maybe read it to my Kinders.

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  8. Rome and Juliet eat your heart out!

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  9. LOL.... I came racing here thinking I'll get in early with my link.... and what do you know... no link....LOL. Loved Catherine's analogy on what might have happened...lol.
    Loved your picture book Susanna, oh so sweet and oh so .... umm slithery..lol. Very appropriate for valentines.
    Just saw Margaret's picture book for this week and can't believe I just got that same book out of the library to read for next weeks PPBF...lol..... great minds! Off to read her review.
    Here's my link...... http://thepatientdreamer.com/2012/02/11/perfect-picture-book-friday-6/ Called "Happy Feet's Incredible Journey"

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  10. So true! You haven't seen love until you've seen Slugs In Love :) The epic love story... oh, wait, I think I'm starting to sound like the Twilight commercial :)

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  11. I think they will love it! As love books go, even boys may like this one :)

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  12. OMG! I am a basket case. 3 days of fever this week clearly fried my few remaining brain cells! Off to add the link right now! SO SORRY!

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  13. LOL.... no worries Susanna..... will add my link in now. (fingers cross it works)

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  14. This book sounds funny... But a little gross too. Slugs... (shiver) Yuck! It's cool how the author made slugs (shiver) sound... nice and cute! (even more shivering) The cover picture is cute too!

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  15. This sounds like such a cute book! Thanks for sharing!

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  16. Hi Susanna, I'm not sure why my link never adds, but can you add Milo Armadillo to the list? Here's my link-http://jennyleeyoung.blogspot.com/2012/02/perfect-picture-book-friday-milo.html Thanks a bunch

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  17. That 150 word limit on the Valentine Day contest was KILLER.....so hard.
    Slugs in Love sounds adorable.

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  18. The slugs seems perfect for Valentine's Day. I'm adding it to my library list. My first few drafts were around 170. I'm missing my funny factor, so I'm still working. Glad to see a little more wiggle room. I do admire people who can share a great story in 100 or less. :)

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  19. This book sounds adorable. Kevin O'Malley's one awesome illustrator to be able to make slugs look cute and loveable. Sounds like a sweet book for Valentine's Day.

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  20. I love this book too :) And YES, please make an entry!!! Mine is GACK-awful and if I can humiliate myself by posting it for your amusement I'm hoping at the very least some people will enter the contest! :)

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  21. Alas, no. At least that would be romantic. I'm afraid the moron in charge was asleep at the switch. If you refresh your page, it should be there now :)

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  22. I LOVE this idea! I'm a big fan of snails and silly stories, so yay for the "slime-crossed" love story of Slugs in Love! Putting this on the list right away. Too funny!

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  23. Are you not very well Susanna. Take it easy. I've been up half the night with poorly kids. Pajama day!

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  24. I am much recovered thank you Catherine :) I hope your kids are ok and feeling better today. Pajama days can be fun, though - especially with a cartload of Disney movies :)

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  25. You will LOVE it, Renee! Especially because all their letters to each other are in rhyme! :)

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  26. I especially like it because I think it's got some boy appeal which is hard to come by in Valentine-y books!

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  27. OH, so do I! Someday I will be the queen of fewer words, but I'm not there yet :) I'm so happy that you're working on an entry!!! Can't wait to see it :)

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  28. I agree! It's not supposed to be impossible :) I was thinking fewer words would seem like less of a task, but of course, it's harder to write in fewer words. Clearly my brain is addled this week :) I will look forward to your entry and will not judge harshly if it sneaks a little over 200 :)

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  29. I don't know why either! It's very frustrating. There are three of you who can't ever add your links and everyone else seems to be able to do it without a problem. I can't even find a common denominator among you - you're not all on blogger or all on wordpress. Arrghh! Technology! Of course I will add your link :)

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  30. I am not a person who enjoys slugs. (OK. Let's be honest. They completely gross me out!) But this book is so engaging I like it in spite of the slugs :)

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  31. It really is! Can't wait to see what you've put up today - I'm a-coming...!

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  32. What's not to love about Slugs in Love? I hope you are feeling better now Susanna!

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  33. I know *cringes* I forgot the link list! It's up now. I'll add your link. I can't believe you beat me to Library Lion! I LOVE that book!!!

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  34. Onward and upward, Julie :) You know how it is - no rest for moms, you just soldier on through :) But thanks - much improved. And really, this is such a fun book!

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  35. You won't regret it, Robyn! It's a great one :)

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  36. I remember reading this book with my daughter! I hope you get a lot of love, too, to make you all better, Susanna!

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  37. Aw, you are sweet! A lot of love, yes, but no slack. If mom doesn't do her part the whole house falls apart apparently :) It's OK - I'm tough and on the mend and there are way worse things then a couple days of fever :)

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  38. Looks like two unlikely valentines find each other. Could be a story for our contest looks like to me. lol. Good choice for valentines day, Susanna. Thanks for sharing this book.

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  39. Slugs in Love! I'd grab it for the title alone! :)

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  40. I got my story in 150 words but guess I can make it better by adding a few words. I wish there were a special category for those of us who did comply with the word limit. But I'm sure my story will be better now. Got to go work on it some more now.

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  41. Slugs are pretty cool, in a gross, slimy, shivery way. I hope it has a happy ending!

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  42. Slugs in love -- what fun book. The cover is very creative and it sounds like kids would have fun with this book, as well take away a message. Cute selection.

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  43. What a completely cute book!

    O.K--When I thought about an "unlikely Valentine story," the first thing that came to mind was a slug.

    I'm serious...how does this happen??

    It's a good thing, I haven't written anything yet. :)

    I'm hoping that I can get the creative juices flowing this weekend and come up with something for the contest. :)

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  44. This book just goes to show you that slugs are misunderstood creatures. Must be the slime. Everyone deserves love! Great choice Susanna.

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  45. This sounds like an adorable book. Who doesn't love a good slug story?! I love it! Thanks for the review Susanna!

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  46. KellyamtowerkorenekFebruary 10, 2012 at 1:02 PM

    "Slime-crossed lovers"- now what's not to love about that? I think my students would absolutely love this book. I would even consider reading it to my fifth graders who are all caught up in Valentine's drama ;-)

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  47. the books sounds too cute. will have to check it out.

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  48. I hope you like it! :) I love the sweetness and the humor and, well, the whole idea of slugs in love :) Talk about original!

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  49. You know, I think there's really something for everyone in this book - slugs, slime, poetry, love, friendship, vegetables, farm equipment, and cute little slug babies... It's a winner! :)

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  50. If you haven't read it, Loni, I think you'll like it :) Also, as an illustrator I think you'll appreciate it because the art is really terrific!

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  51. I confess that in real life I am the opposite of a slug lover, but in this book they're so adorable, how can you not love them? :) And my son was grateful for a little slime on Valentines :)

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  52. I don't know how that happens, but it really does! Don't worry. My sample entry is so deeply abysmal it will make ANYthing else shine by comparison :) And I'm guessing there's some room for cactus in an unlikely valentine :)

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  53. It's just not every day that you see a book about slugs in love :)

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  54. Clar, that's awesome! Anyone who comes in at 150 or under should get bonus points :) Mine is suffering from cutting even at 178. So add if you want, or don't - whatever you like. I'll see what comes in. If you're the only one at 150 I'll give you an extra prize :)

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  55. I confess it was originally the title that got me too! (I have a son :)) But the story lives up to the title - well worth the read!

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  56. I know! I didn't even think of that when i made up the contest!

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  57. So excited you're entering!!! And no, you weren't missing it - it wasn't there :( I put yours on.

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  58. What a cute book! It's a perfect Valentines Day gift for my nieces and nephews. Hope you have a great weekend, Susanna!

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  59. Susanna, can't open Picture a Tree. It just brings up a wordpress page nonrelated.

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  60. When I was in college I rented a house with some other girls and we had a slug infestation. We would go to sleep at night and wake up in the morning to find slug trails on the floors, and actual slugs in the sinks. Let's just say that we didn't have the best landlord in the world. So I never thought that I would use the word "cute" and "slug" in the same sentence but...

    This book looks sooo cute!

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  61. OMG, AMY! I don't think i could ever even think about slugs again after that without my skin crawling (which is pretty much how I feel anyway but really, yuck!) so you are brave and open-minded to say these are cute (although they are!)

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  62. That book sounds adorable. Too bad my kids have outgrown PBs. Maybe I should start writing them so I have an excuse to buy them. :D

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  63. The sidewalk in front of school is teeming with slugs. The boys will love this one. I find it difficult to pry them away from the slithery slugs and, as a result, we are often late to school

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  64. Thanks for letting me know, Pat. It's fixed now :)

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  65. I know. There's something about them that seems to fascinate the boys I know, whilst I myself find them quite icky :)

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  66. Go for it, Stina! You'd probably be brilliant at it! I certainly hope you'd have better luck than I have lately :)

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  67. This book sounds totally adorable. So creative! Thanks for introducing it to us. :-)

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  68. Cally! Hi! So glad to hear from you - I thought you were lost in novel land or something :) Glad you liked the selection :)

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  69. Who knew slugs could fall in love :)

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  70. Awww! Love your book choice and so excited about the contest. I have been running myself ragged at the LTUE conference, so I will do what I can. I'm crossing my fingers, I can write something up, but... if not - I'm still checking out everyone else's. :) Can't wait!

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  71. Sorry if someone already mentioned it but there is a book out there called Slugs in Love, Susan Pearson and David Slonim. I only know their next one: How to Teach a Slug to read!

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  72. Ooops! Okay , I'll write this again:there is a book called Slugs in Love, by Susan Pearson and David Slonim. I have only read their follow-up: How to Teach a Slug to Read.

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  73. Susanna,
    I'm afraid of drop offs: heights or even roads out in the marshlands. The what if's begin: What if I lose control of the car and run off the road? What if I lose my footing and fall, etc.

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  74. That is the occupational hazard of being a writer with a good imagination, Linda :) The what-ifs...! :)


























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