Through the Looking Glass Children's Book Reviews

Bessie Coleman: Daring to Fly

Bessie Coleman: Daring to Fly

Sally M. Walker
Illustrator:  Janice Lee Porter 
For ages 7 to 10
Lerner, 2003   ISBN: 978-0876149195

Bessie was determined from a very early age that she was going to get somewhere with her life, that she was going to do something important with her life too, just as Harriet Tubman had done. When she had to pick cotton, do laundry, and iron clothes she always thought of what she could do to improve her life. When Bessie went to Chicago her brother John used to tease her saying that the French women he met in France were better than the Chicago’s black women. Why some French women even flew airplanes. There and then Bessie decided that there was no reason whatsoever why she could not fly a plane if she wanted to, even if she was a black woman.

Bessie set about trying to get someone to teach her to fly but it was not easy because no one wanted to do it. For some it was because she was woman and for some it was because she was black. For many it was because she was both! In the end Bessie had to go all the way to France to get flying lessons and she worked very hard at it, getting her pilot’s license in 1921.

This inspiring and well written chapter book will delight young readers who have an interest in flying.

This is one of the books in the "On My Own Biography" series.