6 Of The Best Picture Books About Flying

All 20 years of my existence have been filled with a yearning to fly. I have been absolutely fascinated with the vastness of the sky and the swishing of wings. I’ve spent years wondering about the magical ability of birds that enables them to fly. I don’t think I’m the only one. Over the years, I came to understand how the weight of their bodies and structures of their bones help them soar. Here’s a list of picture books about flying with their own takes on soaring in the sky. Reading them makes all my dreams come alive!

Up and Down by Oliver Jeffers

This book captures the plight of a penguin who has wings but cannot fly. He decides he must try to do this alone and parts with his friend. He joins a circus to have his little adventure in the air. The boy and the penguin realise they miss each other and reunite at the end. The art is simple yet engaging and brings out the warmth and humour of this delightful tale.

Sera Learns to Fly by Vinitha and Nirzara Verulkar

We know how ants have conquered land with their sheer perseverance. What happens when the tiny Sera wishes to fly? She figures out how to and rejoices in her accomplishment! The colourful art brings out the dreams and wonder of a little ant in this huge world.

Clouds and Waves by Rabindranath Tagore and Sunaina Coelho

This is an illustrated version of Rabindranath Tagore’s beloved poem Clouds and Waves. It is a beautiful tale of a child tempted by both fleeting clouds and gushing waves. She finds her solace and happiness in her mother’s warmth and laughter. The illustrations lift up the wonderful poem into an engaging experience for all readers.

Both Sera Learns To Fly and Clouds And Waves are printed by Katha Organisation. Check out their efforts to spread literacy in India with other gorgeous and educational picture books.

Imani's moon by JaNay Brown-Wood book cover

Imani’s Moon by JaNay Brown-Wood and Hazel Mitchell

Imani is a young Masaai girl who is teased by her peers for being the smallest girl in the village. She has the desire to touch the moon and prove herself to everyone.

Hazel Mitchell created the illustrations with watercolor and graphite and then painted them digitally. It leads to beautiful vibrant hues with a somber blue-grey tone. The art is fitting for this sweet story about achieving your goals despite criticism. It makes us feel warm and hopeful.

The Second Sky by Patrick Guest and Jonathan Bentley

Little penguin Gilbert has been fascinated with the sky above ever since he laid eyes on it, and he is distressed by his inability to fly. While waddling through life, he stumbles upon the beauty of the ocean below. He finds joy while swimming in a world that opens itself up to him. The illustrations are bright, magical, and hopeful. The wonderful shades of blue are both soothing and exciting. It was a pleasure to see the adorably awkward little creature on the page.

Amelia Earhart (Little People, Big Dreams) by Maria Isabel Sánchez Vegara and Mariadiamantes

This edition of Little People, Big Dreams is a biographical celebration of Amelia Earhart’s love to fly. It’s about how a little girl with big dreams went on to fly across the Atlantic. She started an academy to train women to fly. She dreamt of travelling the world in her little plane, and did that too! The simple yet ingenious illustrations complement and focus on this story about dreams and the courage to reach for them.


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