This book will appeal to youngsters old enough to be interested in science and who know a little about magnifying glasses, cameras, microscopes, and how the tides work. David Wiesner leaves lots of room for imagination with this unexpected, wordless story.
The only words you'll find in the book are on the dust jacket (defining flotsam and telling about the "author") and on signs and packages in the illustrations. That leaves lots of room for the "reader's" imagination to work overtime.
If that weren't enough stimulation, Mr. Wiesner puts in some fanciful illustrations that might reflect a child's imagination at work. I can imagine having lots of fun at a sleepover as each child interprets what's going on in the book.
As the book opens, you see a large eye looking at a very funny crab. Then you see the big picture in a two-page spread as a blond-headed, blue-eyed youngster is holding a crab and studying the crab through a magnifying glass. In the background there are two parents reading, shovels, binoculars, a microscope in a plastic bag, snorkel gear, pails full of flotsam, and a small box with a tentacle sticking out. In the background are a sea shell and a huge sand castle. The boy then heads for the water line where he spots a different kind of crab.
When a big wave comes in, the boy is overturned and a most unexpected bit of flotsam appears . . . one that forms the base of the story.
The story was so unexpected and interesting that I've re-read it several times to think about further meanings. I'm sure you'll have the same joy as I did.
An imaginative youngster will have even more.
Take a peek!