As you read the reviews on Bookshop Talk, you'll notice that every review is positive. No, we're not a bunch of literary
pushovers who love everything we pick up; we just see no point in telling you about a book if we didn't like it.

April 21, 2013

WESLANDIA by Paul Fleischman, 1999

Enter the witty, intriguing world of Weslandia! Now that school is over, Wesley needs a summer project. He’s learned that each civilization needs a staple food crop, so he decides to sow a garden and start his own - civilization, that is. He turns over a plot of earth, and plants begin to grow. They soon tower above him and bear a curious-looking fruit. As Wesley experiments, he finds that the plant will provide food, clothing, shelter, and even recreation. It isn’t long before his neighbors and classmates develop more than an idle curiosity about Wesley - and exactly how he is spending his summer vacation. (Goodreads)

Review by Emily, basically a bibliophile

I admit that I was technically too old to be reading picture books when I found this one. Of course, I have rarely bothered with such things as age recommendations . . .

And that was how I found Weslandia. It is a hilarious story about a boy who decides that for his summer homework, he will found a civilization. And he does: he lets the wind plant his garden, and when strange plants come up, he lets them, and creates his own culture based around them.
And of course, it works. Of course it does! It works because Wes is, as he notes, "an outcast from the civilization around him." He's just too different from the rest to fit in. So instead, he creates his own place, a world in his backyard, and he calls it Weslandia. And by the end of the summer, he's not only created his own writing system and all kinds of nifty gadgets, he's made some friends too!
As weird as this book is, I love it very much, because it taught me when I needed it the most that if you can dare to be different, you will change the world.

Market: Picture Book
Language: None
Sensuality: None
Violence: None
Mature Themes: None

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