With temperatures soaring, I had my first ice cream cone of the season, a scoop of butter pecan on a sugar cone from Ed’s Real Scoop. Voted the best homemade ice cream in the city, Ed’s was worth the trip across the city. With ice cream in hand, I made my way to the water. Ed’s is just a hop and a skip away from the beachfront. Life was pretty perfect at that moment. Keep reading…
Written and illustrated by David Wiesner, Flotsam is also pretty perfect. Flotsam is a nautical term used to describe found objects floating in the water. An old-fashion underwater camera gets washed ashore and deposited at the feet of a young beachcomber. Excited, the boy develops the film he finds inside. The developed photographs reveal a bizarre world of mechanical fishes, lounging octopuses reading to a school of fishes, miniature green aliens hanging out with seahorses, and a underwater metropolis built from seashells. From the wild imagination of David Wiesner, readers are taken on a mysterious exploration of the sea.
Flotsam is a wordless book filled with vivid watercolour paintings. David packs his illustrations with enough detail that words are not needed to spin a tale of your own. David’s illustrations are realistic with a touch of fantasy, which makes it easy for us to believe in a fully inflated puffer fish outfitted as a hot air balloon sailing above the water, and a mermaid taking her pet fish for a stroll.
Altering the perspectives from close ups to panoramic views creates dramatic storytelling while the carefully choreographed scenes are laid out to help set the pace and build momentum in the storytelling. David Wiesner is a master storyteller; his ability to communicate and convey emotions without saying a word is a rare talent.
Flotsam, a children’s book review by Thao Lam
Author and Illustrator David Wiesner
For a list of all his books check out www.hmhbooks.com
Publisher Clarion Books (September 4, 2006)