Night Flight: Amelia Earhart Crosses the Atlantic
by Robert Burleigh
Book list *Starred Review* A worthy new addition to the recent spate of books about the famous aviatrix, Burleigh's story concentrates on Earhart's 1932 solo flight from Newfoundland to Ireland, placing compelling poetic emphasis on her single-hearted struggle. Why? Because women must try to do things as men have tried,' writes Burleigh, quoting Earhart. Terse two-sentence stanzas tell a story focused upon the flight's trials: a sudden storm ( the sky unlocks ), ice buildup on the plane's wings, a precipitous plunge toward the Atlantic's frothing surface, and a cracked exhaust pipe ( The friendly night becomes a graph of fear ). The loneliness of the effort is finally relieved over a farmer's field, where Amelia lands and says, Hi, I've come from America. Minor's illustrations maintain tension by alternating between cockpit close-ups and wide views of the plane crossing the foreboding ocean. Predominant reds and blues convey the pure excitement of the nail-biting journey. An afterword, along with Internet resources, a bibliography, and a column of Earhart quotes, increases the book's value for curious children who might want more. Finally, Minor's endpapers, with a well-drawn map and mechanical illustration of the plane Earhart called the little red bus, also work to inspire further learning.--Cruze, Karen Copyright 2010 Booklist
From Booklist, Copyright © American Library Association. Used with permission.
School Library Journal Gr 2-5-On a May evening in 1932, Amelia Earhart climbed into her single-engine, red Lockheed Vega and flew across the ocean, departing from Newfoundland and landing on a farm in Northern Ireland. Burleigh's suspenseful text and Minor's shifting perspectives work in tandem to pull readers into the drama as they experience the anxiety and exhilaration that accompanied this historic flight. Earhart's skill, stamina, and courage are put to the test when a thunderstorm erupts, her altimeter breaks, and icy wings cause the plane to plummet. She faces the "Hour of white knuckles....Hour of maybe-and maybe not." The third-person narrative is arranged in two-line stanzas of free verse; the language is fresh and evocative, morphing to match the mood-by turns terse, lyrical, relentless. Minor's gouache and watercolor scenes pull back from intense close-ups and cockpit perspectives to sweeping panoramic vistas, his fluid brushwork a perfect match for a tale of sea and sky. This book will encourage children to consider the inner resources required to undertake such a feat when pilots had only themselves to rely on-in this case, traversing 2000 miles without the security of land. Back matter includes a technical note, bibliography, and inspirational quotes from Earhart's writings. Endpapers depict a map of the flight and a rendering of the plane. Pair this with Nikki Grimes's Talkin' About Bessie (Scholastic, 2002) to present another female aviator who experienced the pleasures and perils of being a pioneer.-Wendy Lukehart, Washington DC Public Library (c) Copyright 2011. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
(c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
Publishers Weekly A gripping narrative and dynamic art immediately pull readers into the story of Earhart's historic 1932 solo transatlantic flight. Urgent yet lyrical, Burleigh's (One Giant Leap) account opens with Earhart's takeoff: "It is here: the hour, the very minute. Go!" A clear sky darkens as a storm erupts and lightning "scribbles its zigzag warning across the sky: danger." Earhart must also contend with mechanical difficulties-a broken altimeter, a cracked exhaust pipe, a gas leak. The tension reaches a crescendo as ice on the wings causes Earhart to lose control of the plane: "Everything she has ever learned courses through her blood. Now or never. All or nothing." Minor's (The Last Train) gouache and watercolor paintings easily convey the journey's intense drama, balancing lifelike closeups of Earhart with images of her imperiled plane. Stunning skyscapes are suffused with shadow and light; a breathtaking spread reveals streaks of multicolored clouds at daybreak as "Splinters of sunlight stab down through cloud slits and brace themselves on the vault of the open sea." Hearts will be racing. Back matter includes notes on Earhart's life. Ages 4-8. (Feb.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved