Overview

In the early days of aviation, Beatty and Moss hang out around the airport Beatty’s uncle manages. Beatty’s hoping to see her father when he flies in--and quickly out again--on a mail flight. And Moss is hoping his mechanical skills will help him to support himself. Neither anticipates their crucial roles in the airfield’s survival--or in saving Beatty’s father’s life.

In 1933 fifteen-year-old Beatty hangs around a small Texas ...

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Airfield

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Overview

In the early days of aviation, Beatty and Moss hang out around the airport Beatty’s uncle manages. Beatty’s hoping to see her father when he flies in--and quickly out again--on a mail flight. And Moss is hoping his mechanical skills will help him to support himself. Neither anticipates their crucial roles in the airfield’s survival--or in saving Beatty’s father’s life.

In 1933 fifteen-year-old Beatty hangs around a small Texas airport waiting for visits from her pilot-father from whom she longs to learn about her deceased mother.

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Editorial Reviews

KLIATT
To quote the hardcover review in KLIATT's November 1999 issue: Can you imagine a time when a town's airport was run by one ground manager and one mechanic? Dogs, sheep and people wander on the landing strips; crucial lights go out in a thunderstorm. That's the way it was in the early days of air transportation, in 1933 when this historical fiction takes place. Ingold researched the history of aviation, interviewing many people involved in these pioneering days (including her own father) to write this story. It is told in the first person, by a 15-year-old girl filled with energy and ideas, who is hanging around the local airport at Muddy Springs, Texas. Beatty's uncle has just gotten the job of temporary ground manager, and she is eager to help in any way she can. Her father is a pilot, and he flies in and out of the airport occasionally, so she is able to at least set eyes on him from time to time. Also, she finds out that her mother, who died when Beatty was a toddler, was a daredevil pilot. Now Beatty begins to understand why her father has never wanted her around airplanes and has never encouraged her to fly: he is afraid she will be like her mother and that he will lose her too. Add to this historical setting and family drama a bit of romance: Beatty makes friends with a homeless boy, Moss, who is trying to survive living alone in an abandoned railroad caboose, helping around the airport to get food. For many reasons this will be a popular book for those who like historical fiction about adventurous girls. KLIATT Codes: J—Recommended for junior high school students. 1999, Penguin, Puffin, 149p., $5.99. Ages 13 to 15. Reviewer: Claire Rosser; September 2001(Vol. 35 No. 5)
VOYA
Beatty's mother died when she was a baby, and she has been raised by her pilot father's three sisters, alternating among them. On her fifteenth birthday, it is again time to stay with Aunt Clo, whose new husband, Grif, works for the airline at Muddy Springs, Texas. Beatty likes to hang around the airport, and befriends the mechanic who knew her mother. Beatty, who has never known anything about her mother, now learns that she also was a pilot. Beatty listens avidly to the other pilots when they tell stories about her mother, beginning to understand things about herself. When Beatty's prank nearly costs her uncle his job, she works hard to make it up to him. In the end, she acts heroically with Moss, the abandoned teenager who lives near the airport in an empty railroad car, to prevent a plane crash. Beatty is a delightful young person who takes responsibility for her mistakes and works to correct them. Compassionate and intelligent, Beatty is very real. Written in the present tense, Ingold's prose is quick and spare, yet at the same time evocative and compelling. She echoes themes such as selfdiscovery, maternal abandonment, and longing for a home throughout the story, creating texture rather than action. This is a quiet read with gentle appeal, in some ways similar to Out of the Dust (Scholastic, 1997/VOYA April 1998). VOYA CODES: 4Q 2P M J (Better than most, marred only by occasional lapses; For the YA with a special interest in the subject; Middle School, defined as grades 6 to 8; Junior High, defined as grades 7 to 9). 1999, Harcourt Brace, Ages 12 to 15, 160p, $17. Reviewer: Ann Bouricius
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780547798127
  • Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
  • Publication date: 8/30/1999
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • Pages: 160
  • Age range: 12 - 17 Years
  • File size: 301 KB

Meet the Author

JEANETTE INGOLD, the author of six young adult novels, has been writing since she worked as a reporter on a daily newspaper many years ago. Her novel Hitch was a Christopher Award winner. She lives in Missoula, Montana.
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Table of Contents

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