In William Wegman’s newest picture book, “Flo & Wendell Explore,” Wendell is disappointed when he doesn’t get to use his hatchet even once on their family camping trip. His sister Flo promises to take Wendell on a camping trip he’ll love.
The illustrations are pure Wegman with the beautiful Weimaraner puppy heads and Wegman’s rather simple color drawings of children’s bodies with lots of white background.
Flo takes Wendell to a place where they pitch their tent, and then it’s time for fishing. The reader sees the two of them fishing in a lake with a lovely mountain behind them. Wendell catches a fish but Wegman writes, “They let all the fish go. All except for one small tuna from a can, which they ate for lunch.”
They then find a canoe and go for a ride. While Flo and Wendell make it down the rapids, their boat does not. Children’s hearts will beat a bit faster when Flo and Wendell encounter a bear! Which turns out to be a large black rock. And after Wendell takes the lead and chops through the underbrush, they arrive back at their campsite — in their backyard.
Perceptive readers will note the swimming pool and small boat that accompany the tent in the yard. What an adventure — or was it?
Please note: This review is based on the final hardcover book provided by the publisher, Dial, for review purposes.
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