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The Fearless Flights of Hazel Ying Lee

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An inspiring picture book biography about Hazel Ying Lee, the first Chinese American woman to fly for the US military. Hazel Ying Lee was born fearless -- she was not afraid of anything, and the moment she took her first airplane ride, she knew where she belonged. When people scoffed at her dreams of becoming a pilot, Hazel wouldn't take no for an answer. She joined the Wom An inspiring picture book biography about Hazel Ying Lee, the first Chinese American woman to fly for the US military. Hazel Ying Lee was born fearless -- she was not afraid of anything, and the moment she took her first airplane ride, she knew where she belonged. When people scoffed at her dreams of becoming a pilot, Hazel wouldn't take no for an answer. She joined the Women Airforce Service Pilots during World War II. It was a dangerous job, but Hazel flew with joy and boldness. This moving, true story about a groundbreaking figure will inspire young readers to challenge barriers and reach for the sky.


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An inspiring picture book biography about Hazel Ying Lee, the first Chinese American woman to fly for the US military. Hazel Ying Lee was born fearless -- she was not afraid of anything, and the moment she took her first airplane ride, she knew where she belonged. When people scoffed at her dreams of becoming a pilot, Hazel wouldn't take no for an answer. She joined the Wom An inspiring picture book biography about Hazel Ying Lee, the first Chinese American woman to fly for the US military. Hazel Ying Lee was born fearless -- she was not afraid of anything, and the moment she took her first airplane ride, she knew where she belonged. When people scoffed at her dreams of becoming a pilot, Hazel wouldn't take no for an answer. She joined the Women Airforce Service Pilots during World War II. It was a dangerous job, but Hazel flew with joy and boldness. This moving, true story about a groundbreaking figure will inspire young readers to challenge barriers and reach for the sky.

30 review for The Fearless Flights of Hazel Ying Lee

  1. 4 out of 5

    Danielle

    This book is extraordinary! I teared up several times reading it for different reasons because the writing is so beautiful, the story so engaging, honoring, and full of perseverance, and the illustrations so illuminating of Hazel Ying Lee's life. This book is extraordinary! I teared up several times reading it for different reasons because the writing is so beautiful, the story so engaging, honoring, and full of perseverance, and the illustrations so illuminating of Hazel Ying Lee's life.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Ben Truong

    The Fearless Flights of Hazel Ying Lee is a children's picture book written by Julie Leung and illustrated by Julie Kwon. It centers on Hazel Ying Lee, the first Chinese American woman to fly for the U.S. Air Force. Hazel Ying Lee was an American pilot who flew for the Women Airforce Service Pilots (WASP) during World War II. Leung's text is rather simplistic, straightforward, and informative. Through clear and concise text Leung conveys Lee's verve and passion for both flying and life while also The Fearless Flights of Hazel Ying Lee is a children's picture book written by Julie Leung and illustrated by Julie Kwon. It centers on Hazel Ying Lee, the first Chinese American woman to fly for the U.S. Air Force. Hazel Ying Lee was an American pilot who flew for the Women Airforce Service Pilots (WASP) during World War II. Leung's text is rather simplistic, straightforward, and informative. Through clear and concise text Leung conveys Lee's verve and passion for both flying and life while also conveying the full import of Lee's accomplishments to both America and Americans of color. Backmatter includes a bibliography. The crisp lines and bright colors of Kwon's illustrations simply and gracefully depict a bygone era, and an author's note sufficiently fills in any details missing from the text. The premise of the book is rather straightforward. Born in 1912 in Portland, Oregon, during a time when Chinese Americans were required to carry identification at all times, Hazel was known in her family of eight siblings as the fearless one. At the age of 19, when she first rode in an airplane, she knew then what she wanted to do. Lee was determined to become a pilot even though her mother told her it was not ladylike and despite the racism and sexism of the time. So when World War II reached American soil in 1941 and the U.S. Air Force created the Women Airforce Service Pilots, Lee signed up to become a WASP. All in all, The Fearless Flights of Hazel Ying Lee is another welcome biography of an Asian American contributor to U.S. history.

  3. 4 out of 5

    Kristen

    I love biographies like this about heroes I haven't heard of, heroes I can share with kids who look like Hazel Ying Lee and kids who love airplanes. Details are introduced so smoothly in a matter-of-fact way that will impact kids: when little Hazel is running footraces, we learn that "Hazel didn't care that she was not allowed in certain parts of town or that she had to carry identification on her at all times." Hazel earns her way into becoming one of the Women Airforce Service Pilots (WASPs) du I love biographies like this about heroes I haven't heard of, heroes I can share with kids who look like Hazel Ying Lee and kids who love airplanes. Details are introduced so smoothly in a matter-of-fact way that will impact kids: when little Hazel is running footraces, we learn that "Hazel didn't care that she was not allowed in certain parts of town or that she had to carry identification on her at all times." Hazel earns her way into becoming one of the Women Airforce Service Pilots (WASPs) during World War II. The job is dangerous and eventually cost her her life. The lyricism of the book, though, shows the spirit and joy of Hazel Ying Lee as she soars through the sky. This doesn't feel like a "lesson book" even though it shares important information. This book is one kids will reread often for pleasure.

  4. 5 out of 5

    Patricia (Punky Bookster)

    With Julie Leung's writing coupled with Julie Kwon's illustrations made this so powerful. It made me tear up. I listened to the author and illustrator read this for Green Bean Books virtual story time and talk about the book afterwards which was really interesting! Check it out! https://youtu.be/Tq2l_o70Vq4 With Julie Leung's writing coupled with Julie Kwon's illustrations made this so powerful. It made me tear up. I listened to the author and illustrator read this for Green Bean Books virtual story time and talk about the book afterwards which was really interesting! Check it out! https://youtu.be/Tq2l_o70Vq4

  5. 5 out of 5

    Mutually Inclusive

    The Fearless Flights of Hazel Ying Lee by Julie Leung is a phenomenal picture book biography detailing the life of Hazel Ying Lee, the first Chinese American woman to fly for the US military. Despite being born during a time when racial bias was rampant against Chinese people in the United States, Hazel Ying Lee wasn’t afraid of anything. Hazel fell in love with flying when she was in an airshow with a friend. She worked an “invisible job” as an elevator operator to pay for flying lessons. Regard The Fearless Flights of Hazel Ying Lee by Julie Leung is a phenomenal picture book biography detailing the life of Hazel Ying Lee, the first Chinese American woman to fly for the US military. Despite being born during a time when racial bias was rampant against Chinese people in the United States, Hazel Ying Lee wasn’t afraid of anything. Hazel fell in love with flying when she was in an airshow with a friend. She worked an “invisible job” as an elevator operator to pay for flying lessons. Regardless of both the gender and racial barriers of her time, she would go on to serve as part of the Women Airforce Service Pilots during World War II. I appreciate that The Fearless Flights of Hazel Ying Lee doesn’t shy away from the obstacles faced by Hazel, specifically the racism she faced. From an encounter with a farmer who mistook her for a Japanese fighter when she crash-landed in a Kansas field mid-training, to Hazel’s family’s fight to bury her in a whites-only cemetery when Hazel died in service to her country at the age of 32, these examples give us a great introduction to talk to young readers about the racism directed towards Asian Americans, which seems to all too common during the time of COVID-19. Even with these hard lessons of injustice, The Fearless Flights of Hazel Ying Lee is a beautiful book celebrating the accomplishments of a groundbreaking woman. I really appreciated the beautiful illustrations by Julie Kwon. Many thanks to Little Brown Young Readers for generously providing me with a review copy of The Fearless Flights of Hazel Ying Lee. I’m so grateful to have a part in sharing Hazel’s story. Blog | Instagram | Facebook | Goodreads | Storygraph

  6. 5 out of 5

    Laura

    Hazel Ying Lee had a passion for flying and she didn't let the fact that she was Chinese American, or a woman, get in the way of her dream. To pay for flying lessons, Hazel took an "invisible job" as an elevator operator. She didn't have many options as a Chinese girl. After the bombing of Pearl Harbor, Hazel joined a little known group of women pilots, the WASPs, testing airplanes for the US military. She was one of the most qualified for this dangerous job. No longer invisible, the brave, dete Hazel Ying Lee had a passion for flying and she didn't let the fact that she was Chinese American, or a woman, get in the way of her dream. To pay for flying lessons, Hazel took an "invisible job" as an elevator operator. She didn't have many options as a Chinese girl. After the bombing of Pearl Harbor, Hazel joined a little known group of women pilots, the WASPs, testing airplanes for the US military. She was one of the most qualified for this dangerous job. No longer invisible, the brave, determined, and daring Hazel Ying Lee soars in this stunning book.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Annamarie Carlson (she, her)

    Learn about Hazel Ying Lee, the first Chinese American woman to fly for the U.S. military. Lee loved flying from childhood and managed to get her pilot's license during a time when fewer than one percent of pilots were female (and even fewer were Chinese). When World War Ii began, Lee joined the Women Airforce Service Pilots, testing planes from the factory before men flew them to war overseas. Covers her death in a plane accident at a young age. Learn about Hazel Ying Lee, the first Chinese American woman to fly for the U.S. military. Lee loved flying from childhood and managed to get her pilot's license during a time when fewer than one percent of pilots were female (and even fewer were Chinese). When World War Ii began, Lee joined the Women Airforce Service Pilots, testing planes from the factory before men flew them to war overseas. Covers her death in a plane accident at a young age.

  8. 4 out of 5

    Amy

    A remarkable story about the first Chinese-American woman to fly for the U.S. military. I was so inspired by her drive, passion, determination, and unwillingness to settle for what society tried to tell her she could and could not do. A truly inspiring story about chasing...and fulfilliing...your dreams.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Norkett

    An extraordinary story about Hazel Ying Lee and her part in the Women Airforce Service Pilots (WASPs). Her love of flight from a very early age through all her groundbreaking accomplishments was an enjoyable telling of her place in history.

  10. 5 out of 5

    CMReichard Family

    I love learning something new in a children’s picture that I didn’t know as an adult. I enjoy learning with my children. In this book, the reader will be introduced to Hazel Ying Lee. I highly recommend that everyone read this book.

  11. 5 out of 5

    Samantha

    I had never heard of Hazel Ying Lee, but I think her story (and the story of other female pilots) should be more well known. Leung does a great job of explaining to her audience what Lee went through while not overwhelming her audience.

  12. 4 out of 5

    Jessica

    This unearthed story of the first Chinese American female pilot to fly for the United States Military is a must-have for anyone who teaches WWI, Women’s History, Social Justice...for anyone who teaches...period!

  13. 5 out of 5

    Miss Sarah

    A moving picture book biography of Hazel Ying Lee An Chinese American woman who signed up for the flight program for women during World War II piloting when many were not allowed. I cried. Elementary and up

  14. 5 out of 5

    Katelynne

    Wow, what a cool and inspiring historical figure. I knew nothing about Hazel Ying Lee before reading this book and I loved becoming informed. The art is great too.

  15. 4 out of 5

    John

  16. 5 out of 5

    Suzanne

  17. 4 out of 5

    Esgagu

  18. 5 out of 5

    Susan

  19. 5 out of 5

    Joey

  20. 5 out of 5

    Lee

  21. 4 out of 5

    Nichole Ponzer

  22. 5 out of 5

    Katy Punch

  23. 4 out of 5

    REK

  24. 4 out of 5

    Panda Incognito

  25. 4 out of 5

    Robin

  26. 4 out of 5

    Amber

  27. 4 out of 5

    Lori Lewis

  28. 5 out of 5

    John

  29. 4 out of 5

    Andrea Wang

  30. 5 out of 5

    Kym Lucas

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