Queen of the Air

The Story of Katherine Stinson

Children - Preteen
106 Pages
Reviewed on 08/26/2020
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    Book Review

Reviewed by Soumya Sreehari for Readers' Favorite

Queen of the Air by Mary Curtner Powell is the extraordinary story of Katherine Stinson and her family. Katherine Stinson was among the earliest licensed women pilots in the USA. She set a world record in 1917 for flying the longest distance single flight from San Diego to San Francisco. Known all around America as ‘The Flying Schoolgirl’, Katherine gained the title ‘Queen of the Air’ from the Japanese. Mary Curtner Powell narrates the story of Katherine’s fascination with flying right from her first journey in a hot air balloon (1911) to her record-setting flight (1917). Katherine’s love for flying is evenly matched with her expertise. The story of the Stinson family gives a glimpse into the wonders that happen when family members nurture each other’s dreams.

Can you believe that a flight of 610 miles in about 9 hours was a world record just 100 years ago! Mary Curtner Powell’s succinct narration of Katherine Stinson’s life and flying achievements kept me hooked from start to finish. I was greatly inspired by Katherine’s determination to go after what she wanted with all her might. This was a time when women were considered unsuitable for many professional pursuits. Flying was a daredevil passion dominated by men. The steadfast devotion of Katherine, her mother, and her sister to build fulfilling careers around aviation is motivational to all women. Queen of the Air is filled with moving stories of Katherine’s fearless adventures in flight. The story touched me deeply and I highly recommend it to everyone.