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Author Rhonda Colia’s ‘The Crop Duster’s Daughter’ Establishes a Presence Among Other Writers and Au



This riveting biography gives new insights into her background as a crop duster’s daughter and the highs and lows of life.


The Crop Duster’s Daughter is inspirational without trying to be. From the opening lines, the very warmth that penetrates its creator seeps from the pages—conversational and welcoming.


While reading Rhonda Colia’s The Crop Duster’s Daughter seems like spending an afternoon in a sunroom with a close friend who is discussing her life story. She relates memories from her adolescence to the events that follow later. The reader understands how her tale will evolve, she nevertheless makes every new development rewarding.


At times, her stories overlap, so it is hard to comprehend the timeframe, but her manner makes such periods feel like natural asides. Even with this warmth, The Crop Duster’s Daughter never shies away from the brutal truths of being a woman aviator, especially what it means to succeed in a male-dominated society.


Rhonda Colia conveys recollections of her childhood in such great detail that you feel like an honorary constituent of the Colia family. But amid those recollections, she also discusses how the events in her life evolved to what and who she is right now. The Crop Duster’s Daughter highlights how a gutsy woman from a male-dominated society went on to succeed at aviation and how these teachings have shaped her.


Yet even when tackling some of the unpleasant facts, The Crop Duster’s Daughter is never grave. The book’s force lies in its mastery to instill hope and optimism while maintaining one’s identity. The Crop Duster’s Daughter manages to be a coming-of-age tale, a memoir, and a source of inspiration. More significantly, it reminds us that we are in a work-in-progress and that hope and strength can be a motion if we allow them to be.



About the Book


Mary Leota Mae Burks was born in December of 1918. The first part of the story chronicles the life and adventures of my mother’s obstacles while pioneering careers for women in aviation, especially crop spraying and dusting. The last half of the book tells of how my mom’s teachings and her leading by example influenced my life for the losses I encountered in my adult years.


About the Author


Rhonda Ann Colia is the youngest of four children. She is happily married to the man of her dreams and has grown children, a daughter, and two stepchildren living their own lives. She grew up helping her mom load the spray rig with water and chemical mixes so her mom could spray the crops of grateful farmers. Rhonda continues pursuing her writing career and is looking forward to publishing her first novel of three.


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