It is the traveling symbol of the United States. It is a flying White House. It is an ambassador for America. One of its predecessors, the Sacred Cow, was the birthplace of the U. S. Air Force. It stands five stories tall and is almost as long as a football field. It is Air Force One. In what could have been a straightforward account of America's most important plane, Santella weaves an interesting story of the plane's birth, development and current operations. Providing a wealth of historic context, the book walks the reader through Air Force One's development from Franklin Delano Roosevelt's historic secret flight in 1943 to World War II's Casablanca Conference, to Lyndon Johnson's swearing in after John F. Kennedy's assassination in 1963, to George W. Bush's safe haven flight on September 11, 2001. Covering world and political developments, the book also details how aviation has progressed from propeller-driven modified cargo planes to today's technology-driven jumbo jets. This is an excellent resource. Middle school students will appreciate the short chapters, engaging text and interesting photos. An index and list of additional resources are likewise well done. 2003, The Millbrook Press, Ages 8 to 12.
Gr 5-8-Airplane enthusiasts and children who recognize the term "Air Force One" will enjoy this title, and the attractive cover will quickly grab readers' attention. Beginning with FDR's secret first flight, to Casablanca in 1943, Santella presents short histories and descriptions of the various planes that have been specifically designed for use by the president. It was during the Kennedy years that the Air Force coined the phrase "Air Force One" to designate any plane on which the commander in chief is a passenger. The text is current, mentioning the plane's role on 9/11. The format is attractive, with wide margins, appropriate vocabulary, stylized topic headings, and vintage and color photography. Captions and additional information at the bottom of some pages add to the text. There is mention of where to see some of the retired aircraft, but there is no glossary or bibliography. This unique title offers an easy way to learn about a small segment of history and pick up some interesting bits of trivia at the same time. A priority purchase to add that extra touch of class to collections.-Eldon Younce, Harper Elementary School, KS Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.