Friday, March 2, 2012

Amelia Lost

Amelia Lost: the Life and Disappearance of Amelia Earhart
Candace Fleming
Schwartz & Wade Books

This book received a lot of blogger buzz last year, but it didn't receive much awards attention (OK, none, really) when the Caldecott/Newbery/et. al. were announced earlier this year. Now that I've read it, I can see why the buzz!

Fleming tells us the story of Amelia Earhart in an engaging, readable format. Amelia's biographical story is broken up into chapters and interspersed with "chapters" of her disappearance and subsequent rescue attempts. I liked this dual plot thread which all coalesced at the end of the book. Knowing she is missing heightens some of the details Fleming gives us about her character and her decisions in her earlier life.

Fleming manages to give us a very likable and sympathetic heroine--but also a very real one, complete with faults and poor decision making. This is a true story of a brave woman, but it is also the true story of a human being like the rest of us. There are mild feminism undertones, but they are also reflections of a time during which women did need to gain a bit more independence (i.e. the right to vote!).

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