Amelia and Me

Nimbus. (Ginny Ross: Bk. 1). Oct. 2020. 280p. pap. $11.95. ISBN 9781771088244.
Gr 5 Up–Stemp tells her aunt Ginny’s story of meeting and being inspired by Amelia Earhart. In the 1930s, Ginny Ross and her family live above their mercantile store in Harbour Grace, Newfoundland, Canada. Her hometown is the starting point of many early transatlantic flights and the perfect place for eighth grader Ginny, who loves airplanes and dreams one day of becoming a pilot herself. Her dream is supported by many—her aunt and uncle, her friends, and her beloved Papa (grandfather)—but her mother violently tries to dissuade her. Ginny is literally slapped down by her mother’s obstructionist ways. Despite these obstacles, Ginny secretly learns as much as she can from both her mechanic uncle and the airport supervisor. When tragedy tears apart Ginny’s family, she feels no choice but to pursue her dream by meeting Amelia herself in Boston. This adventurous journey has a positive, lifelong impact on Ginny. Confident and determined, she returns home to chase her dream of becoming an “aviatrix.” This is the first book in a series about Ginny Ross and her experiences meeting Amelia Earhart and breaking barriers regarding women’s place in aviation in the 1930s. The family photos of Ginny, Amelia Earhart, and other historical details are remarkable. The infrequent, mild profanity is the only hesitation to recommending this to strong late-elementary readers.
VERDICT Ginny is a spirited protagonist who does not allow others to stand in her way of achieving her dream. Readers will fly high with her.

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