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Children's LiteraturePart of the "Jamestown American Portrait" series, this edition tells the fictional story of Liz Erikson, an 18-year-old girl from Chippewa Falls, Wisconsin, who dreams of being an airplane pilot. The year is 1942 and World War II is in full swing. Liz lives with her father and brother, James, who tells part of the story. Liz' mother was a pilot herself, something special for those early days. She died when her plane crashed in a storm causing speculation on her abilities. Through a friend, Liz learns about a government program that trains women to fly planes between army bases to free much needed male pilots to concentrate on the war effort. Liz applies for and wins a place in the next class, but it means leaving her family behind and traveling to a base in Texas for training. The story follows Liz through her training and her relationship with her family, left behind. Liz graduates and in the process discovers something special about her mother. An afterword includes black and white photos and a description of actual women who served as ferrying pilots during World War II. This book is aligned to national standards and includes a web site for further information. 2004 (orig. 2000), Waterbird Books, Ages 9 to 12.
—Meredith Kiger, Ph.D.