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Children's Fiction Self-esteem & Self-reliance

Sugar and Snails

by (author) Sarah Tsiang

illustrated by Sonja Wimmer

Annick Press
Initial publish date
Mar 2018
Self-Esteem & Self-Reliance, Boys & Men, Multigenerational
  • Hardback

    Publish Date
    Mar 2018
    List Price

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Recommended Age, Grade, and Reading Levels

  • Age: 4 to 7
  • Grade: p to 2
  • Reading age: 4 to 7


A novel twist to a classic rhyme.

Who says that little girls are made of “sugar and spice and everything nice?” Or that boys are made of “frogs and snails and puppy dog tails?” What if girls were made of “boats and snails and dinosaur tails?” And little boys of “flowers and swings and bumblebee wings?”

When the traditional rhyme just doesn’t seem to fit the boy and girl visiting their grandpa, he comes up with a list of unusual alternatives. Soon the children are coming up with their own versions that challenge the old stereotypes with a whimsical list of ingredients. To add to the new quirky version are lively illustrations that beautifully capture the children’s imaginative flights of fancy.

Young readers will delight in the small details of Sonja Wimmer’s vibrant art, and be inspired to think of their own silly examples of what ingredients they might be made of themselves.

About the authors

Sarah Tsiang is an award-winning poet as well as a children's book author. Her books with Annick Press include A Flock of Shoes, Dogs Don't Eat Jam and Other Things Big Kids Know, Warriors and Wailers: 100 Anicent Chinese Jobs You Might Have Relished or Reviled, and The Stone Hatchlings. She lives in Kingston, Ontario.

Sarah Tsiang's profile page


SONJA WIMMER est une illustratrice qui a déjà remporté plusieurs prix littéraires. Elle vit à Munich, en Allemagne.


SONJA WIMMER is an award-winning German illustrator and storyteller from Munich.


Sonja Wimmer's profile page


  • Joint winner, Best Bets List, Honourable Mention Ontario Library Association
  • Joint winner, Best Books for Kids & Teens, Canadian Children’s Book Centre
  • Joint winner, Toronto Public Library’s First and Best List
  • Nominated, Amelia Bloomer Project List, ALA

Editorial Reviews

“Readers will sense that stereotypes and norms are dissolving with each page turn.” 

Publishers Weekly, 01/08/18

“A menagerie of delights.” 

CanLit for Little Canadians, 03/02/18

“Remix[es] traditional assumptions about gender, encouraging readers to think critically about what they’ve been taught in a non-didactic way.”

The Globe and Mail, 09/20/18

“Mixes clever and inventive rhyme with gorgeous illustrations to turn gender stereotypes upside down.”

Dear Author, 12/31/18

“A celebration of imagination and the limitlessness of life.”

Kirkus Reviews, 02/03/18

“Filled with action and imagination.” 

Sal’s Fiction Addiction, 09/10/18

Other titles by Sarah Tsiang

Other titles by Sonja Wimmer