Fly, Bessie, Fly



Inspiring story; kids will root for the heroine.

What parents need to know

Positive messages
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Violence & scariness
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Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that kids will root for the heroine of this inspiring story. Expressive characters rendered in watercolor add to the appeal.

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What's the story?

Flying is the theme in more ways than one in this true story of Bessie Coleman: Bessie flies away from repressive society and soars into the skies as the first black and first female pilot. Bright, colorful illustrations add charm and interesting detail.

Is it any good?


This is an important introduction to the inspiring life of Bessie Coleman. Watercolors by Yvonne Buchanan are light and breezy, with a sense of Coleman flying on many of the pages. Yet, at other times, the people look almost cartoonlike.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about Bessie's decision to become a pilot. What inspired her to learn to fly an airplane? Do you think you'd like being a pilot?

Book details

Author:Lynn Joseph
Illustrator:Yvonne Buchanan
Book type:Non-Fiction
Publisher:Simon & Schuster
Publication date:January 1, 1998
Number of pages:32
Publisher's recommended age(s):4 - 7

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Learning ratings

  • Best: Really engaging; great learning approach.
  • Very Good: Engaging; good learning approach.
  • Good: Pretty engaging; good learning approach.
  • Fair: Somewhat engaging; OK learning approach.
  • Not for Learning: Not recommended for learning.
  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

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