|Flying high : the story of gymnastics champion Simone Biles (Who Did It First? Book)|
Author: Meadows, Michelle
A lyrical picture book biography of Simone Biles, international gymnastics champion and Olympic superstar.
|Accelerated Reader Information:|
Interest Level: LG
Reading Level: 3.10
Points: .5 Quiz: 511850
Kirkus Reviews (03/15/20)
School Library Journal (10/01/20)
Full Text Reviews:
Booklist - 04/01/2020 Simone Biles has overcome many challenges to become one of the most impressive and decorated gymnasts of all time. This is the true story of how she and her siblings were placed in foster care, split apart, and adopted by different families, as well as how she was introduced to gymnastics. Readers will see how hard Biles worked, pushing past crushing defeat and leaving high school in order to homeschool, to rise into the Final Five of Team USA at the Olympics. The highly simplistic rhyming couplets can feel a bit saccharine for this wonderfully complex and triumphant subject matter, but very young readers certainly deserve an introduction to this stunning gymnast, and the author should be applauded for not shying away from the more difficult parts of her backstory. Glenn’s illustrations are full of action, energy, and expressive emotion, and she captures the impressive athleticism and trademark flair of her subject on every page, most notably a dynamic dual-page spread highlighting Biles' signature floor move, a double layout with a half-twist landing. - Copyright 2020 Booklist.
School Library Journal - 10/01/2020 PreS-Gr 3—This picture book biography of elite gymnast Simone Biles follows a pattern of setbacks and triumphs. Readers see the uncertainty of Biles's first childhood home, then watch as Biles and her three siblings are placed in a foster home, get separated, and are eventually adopted by their biological grandparents. A canceled field trip resulted in her first visit to a gymnastics facility; the disappointment of missing the cutoff for the national team fueled the efforts that led to her Olympic fame. The story does not dwell on the negatives but emphasizes how each obstacle was overcome through family support and hard work. Gymnastics terms, such as vault, bars, and beam, are introduced and the rhythm of the rhyming text reflects Biles's energy and movement. Glenn's illustrations portray the athlete at various ages; she tumbles through the house and later perfects her competitive moves. The artwork captures the power and poise of gymnastics as well as the emotions of each scene. One dynamic spread depicts "the Biles" signature floor move as she flips through the air. Back matter includes photos, sources, facts (height, birthday), and important milestones in the Olympics and International Gymnastics Federation. VERDICT A good addition to the biography section and an excellent book to hand to readers always asking for gymnastics titles.—Suzanne Costner, Fairview Elem. Sch., Maryville, TN - Copyright 2020 Publishers Weekly, Library Journal and/or School Library Journal used with permission.