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AMELIA EARHART:

THE TURBULENT LIFE OF AN AMERICAN ICON


Winters follows her biography of Anne Morrow Lindbergh (2006) with a refreshing look at Earhart. Resisting tabloid tales, Winters focuses on responsible accounts and Earhart’s own writings to show how public demands and family pressures induced the aviatrix to fly beyond her capabilities. Although she is lauded as one of the greatest pilots of all time, Earhart’s contemporaries were less charitable and more realistic, and while her death was mourned by all of them, it did not come as a great surprise. Winters pinpoints this sentiment at its most poignant by quoting WASP (Women Airforce Service Pilots) founder Jackie Cochran, who recalled telling her friend before the last flight, “I wish you wouldn’t go off and commit suicide because that’s exactly what you’re going to do.” With erudite analysis of everything from Earhart’s flying to her marriage and longtime financial support of her parents and sister, Winters proves there is still much to learn about this American icon. Earhart’s disappearance is legendary; it’s long past time to know its back story and why a final crash was always on the horizon. –Colleen Mondor

Reviews
“Succinctly lays out the facts of Amelia Earhart’s remarkable story from ‘a pilot’s perspective’ . . . The author’s knowledge of aviation history renders this a proficient chronicle of women in flight.” –Kirkus Reviews

“Winters follows her biography Anne Morrow Lindbergh (2006) with a refreshing look at Earhart. Resisting tabloid tales, Winters focuses on responsible accounts and Earhart’s own writings to show how public demands and family pressures induced the aviatrix to fly beyond her capabilities. With erudite analysis of everything from Earhart’s flying to her marriage and longtime financial support of her parents and sister, Winters proves there is still much to learn about this American icon.”—Booklist

“In this latest installment of Earhart historiography, Winters (Anne Morrow Lindbergh: First Lady of the Air) explores her subject’s skills as an aviator and questions her character, thus providing another corrective to earlier Earhart hagiographies and popular perceptions. Earhart’s accomplishments have been scrutinized for some time, and Winters’s well-written and thoroughly researched study should serve as a final corrective. Recommended both as a character study and a technical study to general readers and specialists.” —Library Journal

“Winters follows her biography Anne Morrow Lindbergh (2006) with a refreshing look at Earhart. Resisting tabloid tales, Winters focuses on responsible accounts and Earhart’s own writings to show how public demands and family pressures induced the aviatrix to fly beyond her capabilities. With erudite analysis of everything from Earhart’s flying to her marriage and longtime financial support of her parents and sister, Winters proves there is still much to learn about this American icon.” —Booklist

“Kathleen Winters’s book is full of details I had never known about Amelia Earhart, which put her achievements and ultimate tragedy in a surprising new perspective. The author’s experience as a pilot herself comes through in every part of the book. Anyone interested in flying or women who defy stereotypes will enjoy this book; but it also is a study in the timeless American traditions of marketing and PR.”—James Fallows, Atlantic Monthly, author of Free Flight

“Kathleen C. Winters promises to dig through the myths and heroic dross to look at Amelia Earhart from ‘a pilot’s perspective.’ This she does with masterly story-telling precision, revealing the sad truth that the famous aviatrix was all too often (usually owing to conflicting demands) ill-prepared to undertake her many attempted record flights. The result is a sober and absorbing account of the world’s most iconic, yet tragic female pilot.” —Larry E. Tise, author of Conquering the Sky and the Wilbur and Orville Wright Distinguished Professor of History, East Carolina University

“In Amelia Earhart: The Turbulent Life of an American Icon, pilot and biographer Kathleen C. Winters draws upon new sources to give us a welcome and long overdue account of Earhart’s tumultuous career, as well as the careful fashioning of her public image. A book with no small share of surprises, and an important contribution to the history of women and aviation.”—David Toomey, author of Stormchasers and co-author of Amelia Earhart’s Daughters

“If you’re only going to read one Amelia biography, make it this one. It’s fast moving, puts all the facts in the context of the times and doesn’t try to prove a point. It’s hard to put down.”—Budd Davisson, Editor-in-Chief, Flight Journal magazine


Praise for Anne Morrow Lindbergh:

“A perfectly calibrated tribute to an early heroine of the air.”–Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

“Both pointed and modest.”–The New York Times Book Review

“Beautifully written.”–Booklist