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The Sound of Wings: The Life of Amelia Earhart (edition 2009)

by Mary S. Lovell

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Member:jogreenway
Title:The Sound of Wings: The Life of Amelia Earhart
Authors:Mary S. Lovell
Info:St. Martin's Griffin (2009), Edition: Reprint, Paperback, 464 pages
Collections:Your library
Rating:****
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The Sound of Wings: The Life of Amelia Earhart by Mary S. Lovell

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This book does an excellent job of explaining Amelia Earhart's achievements and putting them in the context of her time. It also highlights the achievements of a number of her now lesser known contemporaries, which I found fascinating.

I especially enjoyed the descriptions of the intrepid women aviators at the national races: flying with one hand holding the roof on! putting out a tail fire and carrying on!

This is really a double biography - it devotes significant time to the early life of Earhart's husband, George Putnam. I did not find this as interesting, especially as the author was quite defensive about Putnam and his reputation. She seemed to assume the audience had a pre-conceived attitude towards him that needed correcting. This may be true in general, but I had not heard of him prior, so found it a bit laboured in these sections. ( )
  daisyq | Mar 31, 2013 |
I read this because I was so appreciative of Mary Lovell's book on Beryl Markham, which I read 9 Aug 1999. This is really a dual biography, since it fully covers the life of Amelia Earhart's husband, George Putnam, as well as her life. Putnam was a leading figure in Bend, Oregan, in the early 20th century. One must conclude that Amelia Earhart was a very daring person but not really a good pilot. This book is valuable for its summary of theories as to what happened to Earhart--but one must conclude that she and her plane simply sank into the Pacific, and the Japanese had nothing to do with her death. ( )
  Schmerguls | Sep 4, 2011 |
Silly woman. Should have followed Anne Lindbergh's example and learned to use her radio. She certainly had a great PR man/husband. ( )
  picardyrose | May 18, 2010 |
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Epigraph
Courage is the price that Life exact for granting peace.
The soul that knows it not, knows no release
From little things;
Knows not the livid loneliness of fear,
Nor mountain heights where bitter joy can hear
The sound of wings.

How can Life grant us boon of living, compensate
For dull grey ugliness and pregnant hate
Unless we dare
The soul's dominion?  Each time we make a choice we pay
With courage to behold the restless day,
And count it fair.

--Amelia Earhart, "Courage" 1927
Dedication
The book is dedicated to the memory of John A. Belcher
"He was a verray parfit gentil knight" --Chaucer's Canterbury Tales
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Introduction:  It is now more than fifty years since Amelia Earhart disappeared with attempting to be the first woman to fly around the world.
Prologue:  It was June 19, 1928.
Chapter One, The small town of Atchison, Kansas, seems an unlikely birthplace for a woman whose name, more than fifty years after her death remains synonymous with adventure, heroism, and posthumous mystery.
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Describes Earhart's tomboy childhood, her early fascination with airplanes, the impact of Lindbergh's 1927 transatlantic flight on her life, and her disappearance in 1937.

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