What would you do if you were bedridden with days and days of nothing to do? Would you explore every crack in the ceiling? Would you watch shadows come and go? Author Elisabeth Tova Bailey had a much more interesting diversion. She became acquainted with a snail who came as a gift along with a potted wild violet plant. Ms. Bailey says, "The isolation and limits of illness can be very tough, something even tougher than illness itself. She adds, "The snail was very critical in getting me through a hard time. I think each of us, in surviving any difficult life challenge, has to find a way to stay connected to the world as that connection is what sustains us."
What led Ms. Bailey to write the book? She explains, "I felt I owed the snail a biographical thank you and partly because I felt the story would be of help to other people going through a rough time." Readers will learn that Ms. Bailey and her little visitor have much in common: both are confined to their homes and are greatly curious, both make the most of it by exploring the magic of the world around them, both move slowly and accomplish much.
The Sound of a Wild Snail Eating, though a book of natural history--the life and culture of an individual wild snail--profoundly captures the author's life with a debilitating chronic illness.
--Algonquin Books of Chapel Hill, a division of Workman Publishing, New York, hard cover, 191 pp., $18.95
---Author website: www.elisabethtovabailey.net
Book Reveiw by Eula Hoover, AARDA