From takeoff to landing, a look behind the scenes of a commercial flight.
A family begins their journey with boarding passes in hand. The perspective then zooms back to reveal the ground crew. Bags are loaded, “the tug pushes the plane away from the gate,” and the control tower gives the all clear. As the pilot lifts the plane off the runway, readers visit the family once again in flight. After a quick few pages showing food-service carts and the myriad ways folks entertain themselves in the air, the focus shifts swiftly back toward everyone who helps the plane land smoothly. Technical terms such as “yoke” and “landing gear” help youngsters understand the mechanics of a flight (and are further defined in a closing glossary) in addition to the scenes of a typical airport visit. Clement’s crisp, clean digital images and bold angle placements resemble those of another transportation connoisseur, Donald Crews. The focal family is interracial, with an East Asian mom and white dad; the pilot is a white woman, and her co-pilot is a man of color. A wriggling, furry passenger that has been hiding in the daughter’s bag the entire flight gives readers a sweet surprise ending.
It’s not the only first introduction to flight to be found, but it’s an intriguing choice for the more technically minded. (Picture book. 4-8)