By Jacqueline Grima
Children’s writers Schlunke and Polyp, also known as illustrator Eva Schlunke and author Paul Fitzgerald, joined the Manchester Children’s Book Festival Family Fun Day this weekend and brought with them their fantastic book Little Worm’s Big Question.
Little Worm is feeling very sad. He lives in a dank, dark hole and his home is very muddy. All Little Worm eats is mud. Mud for breakfast, mud for lunch and mud for dinner! And, to make matters, worse, one day, Little Worm gets trodden on by a big boot and – splat! – he ends up covered in the stuff. This makes Little Worm very sad. All he is is a worthless worm!
Trying to make him feel better, Little Worm’s friend Grasshopper tells him that he is not worthless at all. Every animal has something special about them, and she shows Little Worm just special she is by jumping high into the sky. Determined to find out just what it is that is special about himself, Little Worm decides to go on a big adventure!
Setting off across the world, Little Worm talks to lots of different kinds of animals, trying to find out what is special about each and every one of them. Among the new friends he makes along the way are a Pompous Peacock, who has very special and beautiful feathers, a Captivating Cobra who is very venomous, a Wondrous Whale, who is the biggest creature ever to have lived on the earth and a Ponderous Polar Bear who is very good at posing on an iceberg.
Feeling very brave, he even travels to the moon to meet an astronaut! The astronaut thinks humans are very special because of their big brains but he does wonder if a big brain is enough to be in charge of looking after planet earth!
At the end of his journey, Little Worm is still not feeling very special and it is only when he meets another worm that he finds out what is own special quality is. He is a worm! And worms do a very special job. By eating mud, they make compost which helps all the plants grow and helps to feed all the animals on earth.
All the children at the Family Fun day loved hearing all about Little Worm and his adventures, read by Schlunke and Polyp themselves, as well as looking at all the beautiful illustrations in the book.
Polyp told us, “Little Worm’s Big Question is a story about not always comparing yourself to others. The world can be so competitive today and we wanted to introduce children to a character who is quite humble even though he does a very important job.”
The Manchester Children’s Book Festival runs from 24th June – 3rd July. Download the 2016 brochure for information on upcoming events.