The Tin Snail is an engrossing middle grade novel set in France during Word War II.
13 year old Angelo lives with his dad in France. They savour thick black coffees and sweet pastries as part of their morning ritual. They also share something else in common - their passion for cars.
Angelo's dad is a car designer, one of the best.
'The workshop was my favourite place in the whole world. Stepping inside was like finding you'd strayed into the laboratory of some fiendish wizard.'
Angelo isn't having much luck, after an incident at at the Paris Motor Show in which he, urm, kind of destroyed his dad's latest creation ... 'Flattened, to be precise.' Angelo is now determined to help his dad succeed with a new design.
Their aim is to design a car that will make France proud, proving to their competitors once and for all that they are the best car designers.
Lack of money due to the threat of war means luxury cars are out, practical affordable vehicles are needed, cue ... the tin snail! A turning point in car production and design.
'The car that had started out as a lopsided pastry. I stepped towards it, spellbound. It was unique.'