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The Sound of a Wild Snail Eating

While an illness keeps her bedridden, Elisabeth Bailey watches a wild snail that has taken up residence in a terrarium alongside her bed. She enters the rhythm of life of this mysterious creature, and comes to a greater understanding of her own confined place in the world. In a work that beautifully demonstrates the rewards of closely observing nature, she shares the inspiring and intimate story of her close encounter with Neohelix albolabris - acommon woodland snail. Intrigued by the snail's world - from its strange anatomy to its mysterious courtship activities - she becomes a fascinated and amused observer of the snail's curious life. The Sound of a Wild Snail Eating is an affirmation of the healing power of nature, revealing how much of the world we miss in our busy daily lives, and how truly magical it is. A remarkable journey of survival and resilience, The Sound of a Wild Snail Eating shows how a small part of the natural world can illuminate our own human existence and deepen our appreciation of what it means to be fully alive.
Product Details

Table of Contents

Prologueâ â Part I The Violet-Pot Adventures â 1â Field Violetsâ â â 2â Discoveryâ â â 3â Explorationsâ â Part II A Green Kingdom â 4â The Forest Floorâ â â 5â Life in a Microcosmâ â â 6â Time and Territoryâ â Part III Juxtapositions â 7â Thousands of Teethâ â â 8â Telescopic Tentaclesâ â â 9â Marvellous Spiralsâ â 10â Secret Recipesâ â Part IV The Cultural Life 11â Colonies of Hermitsâ â 12â Midnight Leapâ â 13â A Snail's Thoughtsâ â 14â Deep Sleepâ â Part V Love and Mystery 15 Cryptic Lifeâ â 16 Affairs of a Snailâ â 17 Bereftâ â 18 Offspringâ â Part VI FAmiliar Territory 19 Releaseâ â 20 Winter Snailâ â 21 Spring Rain â â 22 Night Starsâ â Epilogueâ â Acknowledgementsâ â Appendix: Terrariaâ â Selected Sourcesâ â

Prologue Part I The Violet-Pot Adventures 1 Field Violets 2 Discovery 3 Explorations Part II A Green Kingdom 4 The Forest Floor 5 Life in a Microcosm 6 Time and Territory Part III Juxtapositions 7 Thousands of Teeth 8 Telescopic Tentacles 9 Marvellous Spirals 10 Secret Recipes Part IV The Cultural Life 11 Colonies of Hermits 12 Midnight Leap 13 A Snail's Thoughts 14 Deep Sleep Part V Love and Mystery 15 Cryptic Life 16 Affairs of a Snail 17 Bereft 18 Offspring Part VI FAmiliar Territory 19 Release 20 Winter Snail 21 Spring Rain 22 Night Stars Epilogue Acknowledgements Appendix: Terraria Selected Sources

About the Author

Elisabeth Tova Bailey's essays and short stories have been published in the Missouri Review, Northwest Review, and the Sycamore Review. She has received several Pushcart Prize nominations, and the essay on which this book is based received a Notable Essay Listing in Best American Essays. She lives in Maine.


"Bailey has involuntarily spent over 20 years coping with restricted movement. This intimate account of her snail-like life challenges readers to seek calm in their own lives." * Library Journal (US) * "This book is beautifully written and is an amazing story of how the human spirit can be so strong, even in the most adverse of circumstances. It is a wonderful illustration of the healing power of nature." * Interaction - Action for M.E. * "Single-handedly, this easy-to-read, absorbing book shares with us one woman's suffering, the power of nature to soothe, and an awarness of the natural world that we may previously have overlooked." * - 15 March 2011 * "This book is an ideal present, an anecdotal influence, a reminder of what it is to be alive, and most of all, a warm-hearted story of a real person who found her path with the help of one of nature's smallest creations." * The Middle Way, Journal for the Buddhist Society - Feb 2011 * "A charming, delicate meditation on the meaning of life." * Kirkus Review * "This slim, thoughtful book is a miniature masterpiece." * The Independent * "With exquisite delicacy, Bailey doesn't mention the French enthusiasm for eating them with garlic butter. In fact, if the only time you think about snails is when you storm into the garden to wreak vengeance on them for ravaging your hostas, Bailey's beautifully written, brief memoir may change your views forever." * Daily Mail * "Beautifull observed nature study of a creature most would dismiss as just a step from the slug - by an American author who has M.E. We're invited to draw the obvious parallels and she pulls it off, elegantly." * ME Association Magazine - WInter 2010 * "If evidence was needed of the healing and uplifting power of nature, then Elisabeth Tova Bailey's passionate, heart warming and illuminating writing offers real proof." * Devon Wildlife Trust Network News - November 2010 * "This charming little book tells us to slow down, take note and learn from all that's around us." * New Books Magazine - Jan/Feb 2011 * "The Sound of a Wild Snail Eating is an affirmation of the healing power of nature, revealing much of the world we miss in our busy daily lives, and how truly magical it is." * Country Smallholding * "If evidence were needed of the healing and enriching power of the natural world, Elisabeth Bailey's passionate, heart-warming and illuminating little book is definitive proof." * Resurgence - Jan/Feb 2011 * "Bailey's book is like a snail's shell, with an inexpectedly touching friendship lying at its centre. Spiralling outwards are meditations on time, purpose and purposelessness, evolution and human survival." * The Oxonian Review * "This book offers a very different perspective (of life) and is beautifully written and meticulously researched." * The Scientific Medical Network *

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