Tuesday, March 22, 2016

The Secret World of Walter Anderson by Hester Bass & illustrated by E. B. Lewis

ISBN: 9780763671167
My thoughts:  I love children's picture book and early chapter biographies . They are the beginnings of future in-depth readings and education into real people and real places. As children venture into the pages of The Secret World of Walter Anderson they will see a world of lovely watercolors showing the artist in his favorite place and exploring his favorite world - his cottage on a Mississippi Gulf Coast Island. They don't really explore the art of Walter Anderson. They learn about his personality and his love of the island and isolation.

While on his beloved island and while exploring this wild and beautiful setting, his mind and talent would take wings that only such isolation permitted. He portrayed the animal friends he found on the island and he captured what he perceived to be the essence of this wild and wonder place and the wild and wonder creatures that inhabited it.

As a reclusive naturalist he created watercolors that he did not share with the world and they were only discovered after his death. He has been declared an American master.

This is a Candlewick Press children's biography and I certainly enjoyed reading about this American artist.

About the book:    Enter the fascinating world of reclusive nature-lover Walter Anderson — perhaps the most famous American artist you’ve never heard of.

Residents along the Mississippi Gulf Coast thought Walter Anderson was odd, rowing across twelve miles of open water in a leaky skiff to reach Horn, an uninhabited island without running water or electricity. But this solitary artist didn’t much care what they thought as he spent weeks at a time on his personal paradise, sleeping under his boat, sometimes eating whatever washed ashore, sketching and painting the natural surroundings and the animals that became his friends. Here Walter created some of his most brilliant watercolors, work he kept hidden during his lifetime. In a beautifully crafted picture book biography, writer Hester Bass and Caldecott Honor-winning illustrator E. B. Lewis pay homage to an uncompromising American artist.

DISCLOSURE: I received a complimentary copy from Candlewick Press to facilitate this review. Opinions are my own. I was not compensated for this review.


  1. I just added this one to our list! I'm a sucker for watercolors and nature.

  2. Looks like a beautiful book! Thanks for sharing!

  3. This would be lovely for a homeschool unit study about this artist! Thanks for being a part of Booknificent Thursday this week on Mommynificent.com! Always great to have you!

  4. Wow! What a neat find - to discover his hidden art. I wonder, was it a family member who first saw the watercolors? I'm so glad the world can learn about him and see what he lovingly and secretly created. Thanks for sharing! Visiting from Booknificent Thursdays.


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