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Skies to Conquer: A Year Inside the Air Force Academy

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  • Anonymous

    Posted November 9, 2012

    Future Academy cadet here!

    In 2 years I hope to be one of the doolies described in this book. So far I have only read the sample but when I have the money I intend to buy this book! It made me want to got to the AFA even more than I already do! Cant wait to read the rest!!!!
    - A future cadet

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted May 18, 2010

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    I picked up a copy of Skies To Conquer while browsing in a B&N store while traveling, because I have a daughter who is a cadet at USAFA. As I perused several random pages I quickly realized that Schemo's account of cadet life at the Academy is VERY true to life! My daughter, who is in the class of 2011 completed Basic Cadet Training in the summer of 2007, one year after Schemo covered BCT for her book. The excerpts I read brought back a flood of memories of my daughter's first year at USAFA, as the struggles and emotions of the cadets in Schemo's stories captured the essence of my daughter's journey through the crucible that is a "doolie's" life. Schemo has done a masterful job of detailing the hardships that a four-dig (freshman) faces while the academy, mostly through the energy of the upperclassmen, strives to mold them into the leaders that our future Air Force will demand. The author moves deftly through the lives of several cadets, doolies and upperclassmen alike, in creating a captivating account of life inside a military academy. She does an artful job of portraying the grueling, even traumatic, training regimen and lifestyles of the cadets who must develope leadership skills as they wrestle with academic, athletic and military responsibilities on a daily basis. I was able to recognize almost every experience Schemo related, from the details my daughter has shared with me these past three years, first as a Basic Cadet and eventually as a cadre herself. Yet, there were still plenty of surprises as the author peered into the personalities, dreams and pasts of several cadets, and how these shaped their attitudes and behaviors at the academy. It is an excellent book and, much like a rare and exemplary meal, I had to force myself to slow down and savor the experience. It was a very good investment of time and money. I plan to suggest it to EVERY parent who's child is even remotely considering applying to a military academy, and I am definitely going to encourage all my fellow members of the USAFA Parents Club of Southeastern Michigan to grab up a copy of their own quickly. It should be a "must read" for every member of every chapter of USAFA Parents Clubs!

    Terry Bennett

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 4, 2010

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    Posted July 12, 2011

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