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Amelia Earhart: This Broad Ocean Hardcover – February 2, 2010

4.6 out of 5 stars 5 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Grade 5 Up—In a dramatic prologue, a ship offshore of the tiny harbor town of Trepassey, Newfoundland, is dashed to pieces as a plane flies safely overhead, an image that skillfully sets the tone of the book while also presaging the events that will one day claim Earhart's life. The story begins in 1928, with the intrepid Earhart coming to Trepassey in hopes of becoming the first woman to pilot a plane across the Atlantic. After being grounded by several failed flight attempts, she meets a kindred spirit in Grace, a plucky local girl with dreams of becoming a journalist. Earhart gives Grace (and readers) some background into her earlier life and motivations. It is with great joy that Grace receives news of the aviatrix's successful flight. Flash forward nine years and Grace, inspired by Earhart's accomplishments, is now working for a newspaper in Halifax when she learns of the pilot's sudden and mysterious disappearance. Readers are left knowing that Earhart's legacy will give Grace the strength to try to break down the barriers that prevent her from becoming a reporter. Taylor's thoughtful, deliberately paced storytelling may seem slow to some readers, but it allows for a less-sensationalized accounting of the pilot's life. Towle's black, white, and mono-color illustrations have a classic feel that enlivens the tale with casual grace. Endnotes provide insight into the story for those looking for more information. An excellent choice for comic fans, history buffs, and anyone looking for a strong female role model.—Douglas P. Davey, Halton Hills Public Library, Ontario, Canada
(c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

From Booklist

*Starred Review* Although this first woman of flight has been the subject of many juvenile biographies, Taylor and Towle have combined their talents for research, narrative, and image to offer a fresh view of one particular chapter of her life. In June 1928, Earhart became the first woman to fly across the Atlantic—not as the pilot but as a passenger. The bulk of the story takes place in a small Newfoundland village, the takeoff point for the historic flight, and is told from the point of view of a young girl. The unromanticized depiction portrays the drunkard pilot and reveals the often-harsh preconceptions that both the locals and reporters had of this unconventional woman. As Earhart invested in her own dreams, in the end so too does the young girl she inspires. Endnotes authenticate the underlying historical significance and accuracy of some images, including those of her last, apparently failed, flight, 10 years later. Towle’s black-and-white cartooning, washed with aqua blue, nicely suits the period and displays the excellent work of James Sturm’s Center for Cartoon Studies, through which this book was developed. This is a true sequential art narrative, requiring the reader to attend to the visual as well as the verbal components; but it is also a well-told story of an episode in Earhart’s life that has particular appeal to readers looking for insight on how celebrity is both made and misunderstood, and how it matures. Grades 4-7. --Francisca Goldsmith

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Product Details

  • Age Range: 10 - 11 years
  • Grade Level: 5 - 6
  • Lexile Measure: 1080L (What's this?)
  • Series: AWARDS: Arkansas Teen Awards 2012 Level 1
  • Hardcover: 96 pages
  • Publisher: Hyperion Book CH (February 2, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1423113373
  • ISBN-13: 978-1423113379
  • Product Dimensions: 6.8 x 10 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 10.4 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,276,560 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
I usually shy away from fictionalized biographies. This one was better than I expected. Told from the point of view of a young lady Newfoundlander with big dreams, the story is specific to Earhart's Atlantic crossing, and personalized.

The graphic format is extremely well done; the three colors simplify and clarify the panels. The emptiness of the ocean gets big billing with several double-page panels. With a decent introduction and several pages of notes at the end, your young reader may learn more than they expected.

I'm on the lookout for more books from the Center for Cartoon Studies:
"Houdini: The Handcuff King"
"Satchell Paige: Striking Out Jim Crow"
"Thoreau at Walden"
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Format: Hardcover
While most grade-school children have already gained exposure to Amelia Earhart's various record-breaking feats in the airplane and to her mysterious and tragic disappearance over the Pacific Ocean, fewer know that she served as a trail-blazer for women on other fronts. Earhart held several occupations during her all-too-brief lifetime, including social worker at a residence for the urban poor, university consultant, and associate editor for Cosmopolitan magazine, where she used her position to campaign for increased public acceptance of women in aviation. She even designed her own line of clothing for active women.

These biographical details, which are described in an introduction by astronaut Eileen Collins and in a set of back-end notes by the author, add an interesting economics perspective to this graphic novel about Amelia Earhart. The text and cartoon images focus on a particular episode in Earhart's flying history: her successful attempt to become the first woman to fly across the Atlantic Ocean. Readers who enjoy the graphic novel format can appreciate the good dose of economics and history contained in this new contribution to the literature on an important female role model.
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Format: Hardcover
Amelia Earhart: This Broad Ocean"
Written by Sarah Stewart Taylor
Illustrated by Ben Towle
(Disney Hyperion/Center For Cartoon Studies, 2010)
This brisk, compelling graphic novel tells the story of aviator Amelia Earhart's historic 1928 transatlantic flight, viewing it through the eyes of a young girl living in the Newfoundland village that Earhart embarked from... The writing is economical, and the artwork is expansive and uncluttered, recalling the work of cartoonists such as Seth and Scott McCloud. Both elements mesh perfectly, and while the narrative (wisely) is not crammed with details, it is evocative and propulsive. If you're looking for an Earhart bio that's appropriate for younger readers, this is an excellent introduction to her legacy: my kid read it several times in a row and definitely got Amelia fever. Highly recommended. (DJ Joe Sixpack, ReadThatAgain children's book reviews)
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Format: Hardcover
Amelia Earhart: This Broad Ocean begins with an image, not of a plane, but of a boat, a boat that is tossed on the waves of a stormy sea, smashes into a rock, and then, later, lies in pieces on a calm ocean.

It's a reminder of both the importance and the peril of Amelia Earhart's work. She pioneered a new mode of travel, but she still had to deal with the basic elements of wind and sea.

Ultimately, of course, Earhart met the same fate as the sailors, but this book does not focus on the mystery of her disappearance. Instead, it focuses on the 13 days she spent in Trepassey, Newfoundland, trying to get off the ground for her first transatlantic flight. Although she was an accomplished pilot by then, Earhart was going on this trip as a passenger. Basically, it was a publicity stunt: She wanted to be the first woman to cross the ocean by air, and two other women were also vying for that distinction.

Initially, the reader sees Earhart only from a distance. The main character is Grace, a young girl who yearns to become a journalist and get out of Trepassey, an isolated little town where the residents live off the debris from shipwrecks. Grace writes and publishes a little newspaper, which she tacks up at the village store.

On June 4, 1928, Earhart and her companions land in Trepassey, planning to head out the next day, but the weather and the plane don't cooperate. Every morning, they board the plane and try to take off; every morning, for one reason or another, they fail. After each attempt, they return to the town, where they are tailed by reporters--including Grace.

Finally Grace meets Earhart and asks for an interview. Earhart tells Grace about her life as a pilot and gives her an exclusive--they will take off the next day, no matter what.
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By Rachel on October 31, 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Got here on time was fabulous!
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