… taking chances and facing your fears? Laura Lee Gulledge’s Will and Whit is a sweet, thoughtful look at a girl who does just that. Wilhelmina, Will for short, is 17, but she has an old-fashioned soul. Will makes lamps, partly for fun and partly to keep away the shadows that surround her since her parents died. Her two best friends are equally creative (and equally flawed), and the story follows them through the summer before their senior year of high school. They make new friends, fall into and out of love, and support one another through the opportunities of a local arts carnival and the challenges of Hurricane Whitney, which leaves their town without power for days.
Laura Lee Gulledge does a beautiful job with both the writing and the visual art of this story. The characters are wonderfully complex and detailed, a feature that is mirrored by the artwork. In particular, the shifting shadows around Will give the reader clues to her inner feelings, fears and hopes. The story flows naturally through peaceful afternoons on the river, dark nights during the blackout, and heartfelt talks in sunlight and in shadow.
Reviewed by Fran (staff)