Imagine a thread of a story running through a series of finely-brushed, majestic landscape paintings like those of the Hudson River School. ""Once there were two boys named Josh and Aaron who lived with their family in a big yellow house. Nearby was a river. . . . Where, they wondered, did the river begin."" Their grandfather agrees to take them on a camping trip to find out. The rest of the text then mostly tells, flatly, what the paintings show much better--unless one has an aversion to an Old Master painting showing two boys skipping over a river on rocks or setting up a campsite. But when the figures need only be specks in the landscape--crossing a drowned field or moving up a dirt lane, under stormy or clearing or twilit skies--then there's something of the exprience that many of us have wished for as children, of actually living inside a picture. The boys and their grandfather do find the pond where the river begins, a satisfying quest in itself. But the only real drama is that of entering into this particular 19th-century romantic imagining.