Wednesday, September 04, 2019

World at War: The Flight Girls

The Flight Girls. Noelle Salazar. 2019. 384 pages. [Source: Library]

First sentence: The surf swirled and frothed around my ankles as the sweet Hawaiian trade winds whispered through palm trees, carrying the scent of coconut oil across the sand to where I stood staring at the skyline.

Premise/plot: Audrey Coltrane is a woman pilot, a flight instructor, who witnesses the attack on Pearl Harbor on December 7, 1941. Several years later she joins the new program for women pilots, WASP. The book focuses on her training, her ferrying, and life after the WASP disbanded. She has always dreamed of owning her own airfield; of flying being an integral part of her life. This scares most men off, men who want a woman to be a wife, a mother, a stay-at-home mother. Audrey has always known she didn’t fit in that conventional box. But does that mean she’ll never find her one true love?!

My thoughts: This is a blend of historical romance and historical fiction. Audrey’s story is interesting for the most part. Her parents are supportive and kind; she makes friends easily; men always find her beautiful; she is never in a situation that she can’t handle. No matter life throws her she knows just what to do. She seems a bit too good to be true at times.

I will say this: I am SO thankful the author didn’t commit the unforgivable sin (in my book) of adding a superfluous S to WASP. I find it hard to respect any book—fiction or nonfiction—that does. It stands for Women Airforce Service Pilots. I edited oral histories of WASP pilots for several years when I was in graduate school. These histories focused on backgrounds, training, and serving. I learned much about the times. Some of these ladies were incredible! Some perhaps were better storytellers.

The one part of the story that felt a bit off to me was when she found a way to fly overseas to Europe so that she could search for her missing in action boyfriend.

© 2019 Becky Laney of Becky's Book Reviews

1 comment:

Lark said...

I like these kinds of historical fiction books. Might have to give this one a try. :)