Friday, February 1, 2008

February 2008


Black Wings: Courageous Stories of African-Americans in Aviation and Space History by Von Hardesty (HarperCollins Publishers, 2008, ISBN: 0061261386). Beginning with Bessie “The Barnstormer” Coleman—the first female African-American pilot to achieve national fame for her aerial aerobatics—this book continues with inspiring stories from the Golden Age of Flight. Chronicling the famed Tuskegee Airmen and astronaut Ronald McNair (killed in the Challenger launch), the book features approximately 200 historic and contemporary photographs and a lively narrative that spans eight decades of U.S. history.

Vulcan Test Pilot: My Experiences in the Cockpit of a Cold War icon by Tony Blackman (Grub Street, 2007, ISBN: 1904943888). June 2007 marked the 25th anniversary of the Falklands War between Argentina and the UK. The Vulcan was part of the RAF's V bomber force, which fulfilled the role of nuclear deterrence against the Soviet Union during the Cold War. It was also used in a conventional bombing role in the Falklands conflict with Argentina. Blackman, a Vulcan test pilot who has logged 850 flights in 105 of 136 Vulcans, documents the plane's history and handling characteristics.

In Plane View: Abstractions Of Flight By Carolyn Russo (powerhouse Books, 2008, 1576874052). Featuring photos taken by Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum photographer Carolyn Russo, this book directs your attention to the often-overlooked beauty behind an aircraft's design. The author uses fine art photography to bring out new visual dimensions of these powerful twentieth-century symbols. The book has 90 photographs and a forward by Patty Wagstaff.

Diamondback by Phil Bowie (Medallion Press, 2007, 1933836431). Follow hot-shot pilot John Hardin as he searches for a lost man and his treasure. When soldiers drove innocent Cherokees from their homes in 1838, some left behind a secret of hidden gold. Nearly two centuries later, a prospector discovers some of the ancient treasure, but soon disappears himself. As the pilot and his Cherokee companion search for the lost prospector, so does a murderous family clan and a group of cult members who will do anything their leader asks. The hunt becomes not only a fight against time, but also a fight to survive.

Galloping On Wings With The P-51 Mustang by Howie Keefe (ASA, 2007, ISBN: 9781560276432). This book follows Keefe, an air-race pilot, and Miss America, his legendary P-51 Mustang. The autobiography chronicles a lifetime of flying that began in 1941 when Keefe flew a Piper J-3 Cub on skis while in the Civilian Pilot Training program. He later received a pair of gold wings from the Navy. After retiring form the military in 1950, Keefe found a surplus P-51 and modified it, flying it to victory in air races.




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