Mr. Wishing Went Fishing - Thao Lam
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Mr. Wishing Went Fishing

Mr. Wishing Went Fishing

Mr. Wishing Went Fishing

Grandpa loved two things; wrestling and fishing. I spent hours watching WWF* with Grandpa, learning how perform the chokeholds and body slams, useful skills to learn when you are the smallest on playground. With all the time I spent with Grandpa I only went fishing with him once. It only took one trip for us to agree that I didn’t have the patience or the stomach for fishing (I am not a fan of slimy and slithering worms, they remind me too much of snakes). I am happy just hanging out at home, watching grown men in spandex pound each other.

*Before they lost their title to the World Wildlife Fund, WWF also stood for the World Wrestling Foundation.

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Mr. Wishing Went Fishing, written by Irma Wilde and illustrated by George Wilde is about a jolly old fisherman and his pet fish, Skipper. Unable to stand seeing Skipper lonely, Mr. Wishing sets out with his fishing pole and net to find him a friend.

Jolly, round with rosy cheeks and bushy beard, Mr. Wishing is illustrated very much like Santa Clause. Oddly enough he’s dressed like Waldo from Where’s Waldo, minus the tuque. I am taking a guess that the medium is gouache; it’s the only medium I know that looks flat and solid but translucent at the same time. I love the stylized way George Wilde created water; his water is not only blue but also shades of green, red and yellows. Colour lines waving across the page creating beautiful abstract patterns. I might just borrow the idea for my next illustration.

Mr. Wishing Went Fishing belongs to a series of Wonder Books, first printed in 1952. I discovered this gem while antiquing at the Aberfoyle Antique Market and will be showcasing some of my other finds over the next couple of weeks.

Mr. Wishing Went Fishing, a children’s book review by Thao Lam

Author Irma Wilde

I wasn’t able to find any information on Irma Wilde. If anyone out there has any info, please share.


Author George Wilde

I wasn’t able to find any information on George Wilde. If anyone out there has any info, please share.


Publisher Wonder Books; First Edition edition (1952)