The Big Jump: Lindbergh and the Great Atlantic Air Race [NOOK Book]

Overview

Praise for The BIG JUMP

"Richard Bak has an astonishing gift for making events of the distant past seem as if they happened just yesterday. Now he has put that gift to use in a superb rediscovery of aviation's greatest adventure story: the deadly race to connect New York and Paris by air."—James Tobin, author of To Conquer the Air: The Wright Brothers and the Great Race for Flight

"The Big Jump tells the epic story of the boyish aviator who captured the world's imagination with his solo flight to Paris after ...

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The Big Jump: Lindbergh and the Great Atlantic Air Race

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Overview

Praise for The BIG JUMP

"Richard Bak has an astonishing gift for making events of the distant past seem as if they happened just yesterday. Now he has put that gift to use in a superb rediscovery of aviation's greatest adventure story: the deadly race to connect New York and Paris by air."—James Tobin, author of To Conquer the Air: The Wright Brothers and the Great Race for Flight

"The Big Jump tells the epic story of the boyish aviator who captured the world's imagination with his solo flight to Paris after several others had perished in the attempt. Richard Bak's crisp narrative captures all of the drama, suspense, courage, and thrills of the most wondrous feat of the Roaring Twenties. A terrific read."—Bill Sloan, author of Given Up for Dead and Brotherhood of Heroes

The race to make the first nonstop flight between New York and Paris attracted some of the most famous and seasoned aviators of the day, yet it was the young and virtually unknown Charles Lindbergh who won the $25,000 Orteig Prize for his history-making solo flight in the Spirit of St. Louis. Drawing on many previously overlooked sources, The Big Jump offers a fresh look at the personalities that made up this epic air race—a deadly competition that culminated in one of the twentieth century's most thrilling personal achievements and turned Charles Lindbergh into the first international hero of the modern age.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
* "Bak's (Henry and Edsel: The Creation of the Ford Empire) exceptional contribution to Lindbergh historiography plays out against the broader canvas of North Atlantic flight, from the initial stopover crossing by the U.S. Navy in 1919 through the spate of New York-to-Paris attempts in 1927 and the first Paris-to-New York flight in 1930. Bak vividly captures the flurry of activity by the respective crews in preparing their multiengine planes to cross the Atlantic (only Lindbergh opted to make the "jump" solo, flying a single-engine craft), including the occasional clash of wills, the in-flight losses of life, and Lindbergh's winning of the Orteig Prize for his 1927 flight. Bak portrays Lindbergh as an iconic figure who through courage, perseverance, aeronautical savvy, and excellent working relations with the Spirit of St. Louis's builders and backers won the day and gained worldwide acclaim, although his celebrity eventually took a darker turn. The epilog contains touching sketches of the later years of many of the men and women Bak covers. VERDICT A fresh and remarkably comprehensive perspective on Lindbergh and his competitors who meant to deny him a life of fame and wealth. Impressively researched, with a narrative fairly crackling with energy. Recommended to all readers." — John Carver Edwards, University of Georgia Libs., Cleveland (Library Journal, August 2011)

"Is there room for yet another spin on the tired old propeller of the Spirit of St. Louis? Yes indeed, if Richard Bak is turning the prop. In The Big Jump, a brisk history, Mr. Bak puts Lindbergh's flight in the context of 'the Great Atlantic Air Race'.... It was in large part the pilot's determined lack of flair that made him such a hero when he succeeded — an outcome that, for all the times it has been told, Mr. Bak has imbued again with excitement and pleasure."
Dan Ford, Wall Street Journal, July 23/24, 2011

"The story of the Spirit of St. Louis is well known but seldom told as well.
David Shribman, Boston Globe, August 11, 2011

"Richard Bak has an astonishing gift for making events of the distant past seem as if they happened just yesterday. Now he has put that gift to use in a superb rediscovery of aviation’s greatest adventure story: the deadly race to connect New York and Paris by air."
James Tobin, National Book Critics Circle Award winner for Ernie Pyle's War and the author of To Conquer the Air: The Wright Brothers and the Great Race for Flight

Library Journal
Bak's (Henry and Edsel: The Creation of the Ford Empire) exceptional contribution to Lindbergh historiography plays out against the broader canvas of North Atlantic flight, from the initial stopover crossing by the U.S. Navy in 1919 through the spate of New York-to-Paris attempts in 1927 and the first Paris-to-New York flight in 1930. Bak vividly captures the flurry of activity by the respective crews in preparing their multiengine planes to cross the Atlantic (only Lindbergh opted to make the "jump" solo, flying a single-engine craft), including the occasional clash of wills, the in-flight losses of life, and Lindbergh's winning of the Orteig Prize for his 1927 flight. Bak portrays Lindbergh as an iconic figure who through courage, perseverance, aeronautical savvy, and excellent working relations with the Spirit of St. Louis's builders and backers won the day and gained worldwide acclaim, although his celebrity eventually took a darker turn. The epilog contains touching sketches of the later years of many of the men and women Bak covers. VERDICT A fresh and remarkably comprehensive perspective on Lindbergh and his competitors who meant to deny him a life of fame and wealth. Impressively researched, with a narrative fairly crackling with energy. Recommended to all readers.—John Carver Edwards, Univ. of Georgia Libs., Cleveland
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781118043783
  • Publisher: Wiley, John & Sons, Incorporated
  • Publication date: 6/24/2011
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 320
  • File size: 3 MB

Meet the Author

RICHARD BAK is a Detroit-based journalist and the author of twenty-five books, including Henry and Edsel: The Creation of the Ford Empire and Peach: Ty Cobb in His Time and Ours. He has received three ForeWord magazine Book-of-the-Year awards, the Stuart D. and Vernice M. Gross Prize for Literature, and two Emmys for his work as writer and coproducer of Stranded at the Corner, a feature-length documentary about the fight to save Detroit's Tiger Stadium.

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Table of Contents

Acknowledgments.

Prologue. Instant Fame—or Flaming Gasoline.

Part One. Revving Up.

Chapter One. We’re Here to Cross the Atlantic.

Chapter Two. Where Does France Come In?

Chapter Three. The Ace with the Wooden Leg.

Chapter Four. The Fortune of the Air.

Chapter Five. Slim.

Part Two. Atlantic Fever.

Chapter Six. Giuseppe, the Junkman, and the Racer.

Chapter Seven. For the Sake of Science.

Chapter Eight. Against the Prevailing Winds.

Chapter Nine. Come to Earth.

Chapter Ten. Little Silver Plane.

Chapter Eleven. Paris au Printemps.

Chapter Twelve. A Stout Heart Does Not Fear Death.

Chapter Thirteen. Limbo.

Chapter Fourteen. Hunting Dragons.

Chapter Fifteen. We Two.

Chapter Sixteen. Viva l’Amérique!

Part Three. A New Heaven.

Chapter Seventeen. Lindbergh Is Our Elijah.

Chapter Eighteen. Two More Across.

Chapter Nineteen. The Atlantic No Longer Exists.

Epilogue. Restless Spirits.

Notes.

Bibliography.

Index. 

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