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From the bestselling author of Code Name Verity and the acclaimed author of Flygirl comes the thrilling and inspiring untold true story of the desegregation of the skies.

In the years between WWI and WWII, aviation fever was everywhere, including in Black America. But what hope did a Black person have of learning to fly in a country constricted by prejudice and Jim Crow laws, where previous Black aviators like Bessie Coleman had to move to France to earn their wings? 

American Wings follows a group of determined Black Americans with a dream of taking to the skies: Cornelius Coffey and Johnny Robinson, skilled auto mechanics; Janet Bragg, a nurse; and Willa Brown, a teacher and social worker. Together, they created a flying club and built their own airfield on Chicago's South Side. As the U.S. hurtled toward WWII, they established a school to train new pilots, teaching both Black and white students together, proving in a time when the U.S. military was still segregated that integration was possible.

Complete with black-and-white photographs throughout, American Wings brings to light a hidden history of pioneering Black men and women who, with grit and resilience, battled powerful odds for an equal share of the sky.

  • Pages: 304 Pages
  • Publisher: Penguin Young Readers Group
  • Imprint: G.P. Putnam's Sons Books for Young Readers
  • ISBN: 9780593323984
Penguin Teen