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Flying Lessons & Other Stories

4.09  ·  Rating details ·  4,017 ratings  ·  804 reviews
For the hardback, see ISBN13: 9781101934593.

Whether it is basketball dreams, family fiascos, first crushes, or new neighborhoods, this bold anthology—written by the best children’s authors—celebrates the uniqueness and universality in all of us.

In a partnership with We Need Diverse Books, industry giants Kwame Alexander, Soman Chainani, Matt de la Peña, Tim Federle, Grace
Audible Audio, Unabridged edition, 5 pages
Published January 3rd 2017 by Listening Library
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Average rating 4.09  · 
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 ·  4,017 ratings  ·  804 reviews

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Jesse (JesseTheReader)
I feel like anthologies are so hard to rate, because there are stories you'll love and stories that you'll feel iffy about and that was the case for me and this book. It was nice to be able to read from authors I've never read before and see what their writing styles were like. I also love that this book is full of diverse stories, which is something that we still need more of. ...more
Jan 06, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Whether it is basketball dreams, family fiascos, first crushes, or new neighborhoods, this bold anthology—written by the best children’s authors—celebrates the uniqueness and universality in all of us. Flying Lessons & Other Stories includes a variety of characters — from different backgrounds, disabilities, ethnicities, sexualities. And so here's a look of some of my favorite short stories featured in here:

Sol Painting, Inc. by Meg Medina

Twelve-year-old Merci Suarez is helping her father ou
Sue (Hollywood News Source)
Flying Lessons and Other Stories by Ellen Oh

Flying Lessons and Other Stories are a solid anthology. I love the recurring theme of the short stories which is the lessons you can glean after reading each one. All of the stories feature those kids who are usually unseen. The underprivileged, the weird, the outcast, the brown, and black kids. It’s a necessary mirror for all ages, particularly for middle grade readers. I can’t recommend it enough.

Since, this is a collection of short stories I’ll rate
lily ☁️
a diverse story a day keeps the doctor away

1. how to transform an everyday, ordinary hoop court into a higher place of learning and you at the podium by matt de la peña — ★★½

2. the difficult path by grace lin — ★★★½
i love love love when nuanced, feminist messages are woven into stories.

Blog | TwitterInstagram | Tumblr | Bloglovin’
Bogi Takács
I will probably not review this one at length, I read it because I wanted to relax with fun middle grade stories and loved the lineup. It did not go as well as I thought it would. So just some brief points.

I did not want to see in an explicitly diversity-themed book:
* using fatness as a shorthand for bad character traits
* the existence of non-Christians spoiling the fun about Christmas, as now school holiday celebrations need to be secular (multi-page scene about this)
* the boy forcing the girl
Sara (sarawithoutanH)
Feb 24, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2017
This was a cute anthology. I didn't do much research before listening to this on audio, so I didn't realize it was middle grade. I don't personally enjoy MG, but I think that it's such an important collection of diverse stories for younger readers. There were so many characters from different backgrounds, ethnicities, sexualities, and disabilities. There was a different narrator for each story in the audiobook and I think that added a lot. My favorite story was The Difficult Path by Grace Lin. I ...more
Ron Charles
Jan 10, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: children-ya
Had the pleasure of interviewing the editor, Ellen Oh, about this great new collection of stories for kids. To watch, go to The Washington Post Facebook page:

CW (The Quiet Pond) ✨
I loved Flying Lessons and Other Stories. This book was the perfect book to start off 2017 - it filled me with so much joy, reminded me of the ups and downs of youth, and filled me with so much hope -- hope, because kids with marginalized identities may read this book and find themselves in the stories' characters. And I cannot emphasize how important this is - and consequently how this makes Flying Lessons and Other Stories so important and successful.

Within the Flying Lessons and Other Stories
Fabulous anthology with a mix of genres and perspectives represented. A must-have for middle school and high school classrooms and libraries.
Jan 26, 2017 rated it liked it
I think that no matter what my rating of this book is, that this is an important read, especially for kidlit. I think it's awesome to see more diverse stories (whether that's based off ethnicity, religion, disability, sexuality, race, etc.) targeted at smaller kids. I think that's amazing because when I was a young child looking for books, I never saw books like this. The industry has come a long way and still has a lot of work to do from here.

How to Transform an Everyday, Ordinary Hoop Court nt
Lesley Burnap
Jul 21, 2016 rated it it was amazing
A must read for everyone! Kids, maybe, grade 5+. Many voices represented here. Hope to read more from We Need Diverse Books-maybe even stories for much younger readers?
Chelsea slytherink
review also posted on Wordpress! spoiler-free review!

Flying Lessons and Other Stories is probably the first anthology I have ever read. As expected, I wanted more from each story, but I enjoyed them all nonetheless! This anthology features diverse stories written by diverse authors and I plan to read more books by them. It definitely focusses on diversity of ethnicity and race, which is great. But diversity also means LGBTQIAP+, mental health... representation and there wasn't enough of that.

I a
lucy  Ü
Dec 19, 2020 rated it it was amazing
I always like books that are a collection of stories, so I rather enjoyed this one as it was a collection pulled from a variety of diverse authors.
Meg - A Bookish Affair
4.5 stars. One of the things that initially got me into reading as a youngster was the ability that books had to let me see through new eyes and walk that proverbial mile in someone else's shoes. I think it is so important for everyone but for children and teenagers to have access to a wide variety of books that reflect all different walks of life and experience. That is just one reason that I am such a big supporter of the "We Need Diverse Books" movement. It's an important step forward for the ...more
Released under the "We Need Diverse Books" imprint, and it does an excellent job proving once again why that statement could not be more urgently true. Many of these stories were about coming of age, starting to take on more mature responsibilities while at the same time coming to terms with a more mature, less rosy-colored understanding of the world. All of the stories dealt with differing cultural perspectives, cross-cultural cooperation/meetings/misunderstandings and what it's like to have to ...more
David Naiman
Jan 11, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Some submissions read like short stories and others like an early chapter in a book, but all have an interesting story and perspective to share. Well done by all.
Apr 06, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
4,5 stars.
I loved all the stories except one...
I just couldn’t finish “Choctaw Bigfoor, Midnight in the Mountains” 😅
Mar 08, 2017 rated it really liked it
It's hard to find a good short story book. They aren't put out as much as they used to be. I was was delighted to find this book and will be eager to share it with readers in the future.

I liked each of the stories. Some more than others. Kwame Alexander's story stole the show for me. Samantha Quan was also a strong contender. Those stories I wanted to go and on.

I think it could have been edited better. The flow of the book was off putting in parts.
Mar 22, 2017 rated it really liked it
I may consider going through and rating each story but they were all so good! I really enjoyed these!
Jan 03, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: for-review, e-book, arcs
This review is also on my blog,


FLYING LESSONS AND OTHER STORIES is a short but powerful anthology of diverse stories by diverse authors. Really, these stories could fit into any anthology, because the themes -- sibling relationships, first crushes, friendship, etc -- are universal. But these stories are extra important for young readers (and old!) who might not see themselves reflected in many books and stories.

The stories in FLYING LESSONS AND OTHER STORIES span a range of voices
The Reading Countess
This is a book that must be read-by parents, students, teachers...Having taught in a myriad of teaching environments, I can assure that students who look in the mirror as they turn the pages of Flying Lessons and Other Stories AS WELL AS (or perhaps, ESPECIALLY) the students who DO NOT reflect the characters in the pages of the short stories. For, as Walter Dean Myers said in his eloquent essay more than twenty-five years ago, "If we continue to make black children nonpersons by excluding them f ...more
Jan 16, 2017 rated it really liked it
***DISCLAIMER: This review contains an overuse of the word "Different."***

You know what's great about anthologies? It's all these different stories written by different authors with different view points, different lives, different writing styles, different ideas coming together to create one book.
Much like it's readers, we all have different stories, different backgrounds, different view points, different experiences, even different opinions of this book alone.

This is a great collection of stor
Melissa Williams
Jun 26, 2017 rated it really liked it
I would give some of these stories 5 stars. Others, I would give 4. One or two, I might give 3 stars, but that is mostly because they just don't fit my personal taste in style and subject.
There are 10 stories by 10 diverse authors in this collection, and by and large, it's excellent. I learned of this book by following We Need Diverse Books. This title is our school's "All Middle School Read" this summer. The entire middle school: students and faculty will read the book, and then we will do some
Apr 03, 2017 rated it it was amazing
So, I have been a little distracted with my reading lately. I coach two sports in the spring, so I have small snippets of free time. This book was perfect for that. They stories were by some of my favorite authors and I kept looking forward to the next, great one.

One that really stood out for me was Woodson's "Main Street." Her story of a young girl, growing up as the only minority in her small town in the Northeast had me reminiscing about Full Cicada Moon. Her protagonist's voice was powerful
Gretchen Taylor
Oct 10, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Super excited to share these stories with my eighth graders
Emily Mead
Jan 11, 2017 rated it really liked it
This anthology makes me so happy. YES for diverse middle grade books about all different kinds of things - about being a trans kid, disabled, PoC, native...and the diversity is intersectional too.

The only drawback to it is that 1) the stories are INCREDIBLY short, and often it's like the story's only begun when it's finished. And 2) they're still overwhelmingly American. What I would love to see is a diverse stories anthology with contributions from all over the world, because everyone's story
Holly Mueller
Fabulous anthology of short stories by award-winning authors. I'm glad I bought this book because I want to use a few as read alouds. My favorites were Matt de la Pena's "How to Transform an Everyday, Ordinary Hoop Court into a Place of Higher Learning and You at the Podium" and Kwame Alexander's "Seventy-Six Dollars and Forty-Nine Cents". I also enjoyed Tim Federle's and Meg Medina's stories. They're ALL good, though! ...more
Dec 20, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
The book was okay overall.
I wasn't impressed with all the stories though some of them did manage to become my favourite short stories.
I really liked
Secret Samantha
Flying Lessons
Probably my favourites
I can't remember the names for some of the other ones that I liked but these two are sure to stick with me.
Sarah Johnson
Read this as soon as possible. This may be the best book I read this year... I know, it's only February, but it will take a lot for this to be my second favorite book of 2017. ...more
Adriyanna Zimmermann
Jun 08, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: middle-grade
Actual rating: 4.25/5 stars
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Ellen Oh is a former adjunct college instructor and lawyer with an insatiable curiosity for ancient Asian history. She loves martial arts films, K-pop, K-dramas, and cooking shows, and is a rabid fan of the Last Airbender and the Legend of Korra series. Ellen is the co-founder of We Need Diverse Books (WNDB), a non-profit organization dedicated to increasing diversity in children’s literature. Ori ...more

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