Talkin' about Bessie

Talkin' about Bessie

The Story of Aviator Elizabeth Coleman

By Nikki Grimes; E. B. Lewis (Illustrator); B. Moser (Illustrator)

Orchard Books (NY), Hardcover, 9780439352437, 1pp.

Publication Date: November 2002


Soar along with Bessie Coleman in this inspirational tale of a woman whose determination reached new heights.

Elizabeth "Bessie" Coleman was always being told what she could & couldn't do. In an era when Jim Crow laws and segregation were a way of life, it was not easy to survive. Bessie didn't let that stop her. Although she was only 11 when the Wright brothers took their historic flight, she vowed to become the first African -American female pilot. Her sturdy faith and determination helped her overcome obstacles of poverty, racism, and gender discrimination. Innovatively told through a series of monologues.

About the Author
Nikki Grimes is the award-winning author of numerous books for children and young adults, including the Coretta Scott King Awardwinner Bronx Masquerade and the New York Times bestseller Barack Obama; Son of Promise, Child of Hope. A world traveler, Nikki has spoken and performed in China, Sweden, Tanzania, and other far-flung places. You can visit her on the web at

E. B. Lewis won the 2005 Caldecott Honor Book for Coming On Home Soon by Jacqueline Woodson and the 2003 Coretta Scott King Illustrator Award, for Talkin' About Bessie by Nikki Grimes. Mr. Lewis teaches illustration at Philadelphia's University of the Arts. He lives in Folsom, New Jersey.