When a book is so riveting that you can’t put it down—you don’t. That’s my experience with Flight Girls by Noelle Salazar. It only took me a few hours to read. And trust me you will want to as well.
Flight Girls begins in 1941 and tells the story of Audrey Coltrane who fell in love with flying when she was just a little girl. Raised in Dallas by a well-to-do family, she chooses flying over being a socialite moving to Oahu, Hawaii where she’s employed training military pilots. With the experience she’s gaining and the money she’s saving, she’ll be able to fulfill her lifelong dream of owning the tiny airport near her hometown where she’d first learned to fly.
“This was my chance to prove to my mother and myself that I could support myself and earn the money it would cost me to buy the only thing I’d ever wanted to own—an airfield.”
But her life is turned upside down when Audrey’s caught mid-air as bombs begin to fall on Pearl Harbor. Surviving a hit, she is not only shaken but utterly devastated by the loss of her friends and the uncertainty of her future now that America will enter the war. Caught up in the need to channel her pain and purpose toward helping her country, Audrey leaves her life and a blossoming love behind to join the Women Airforce Service Pilots program. This begins the second chapter in Audrey’s life sharing her experiences as she faces hardship, personal tragedy and discrimination all in an effort to serve her country.
Not only did I fall in love with Audrey but with all the supporting characters that Salazar artfully created.
Through their collective stories I learned so much about this group of fearless women who had such an integral part in changing the landscape of our country in the face of war.
Love is a word I reserve for portions of books and pieces that really stand out to me. This is one of those rare books that I apply the “Books I Love” label from beginning to end. Do yourself a favor and read Flight Girls, a story that sheds light on a little-known group of women who risked their lives for our freedom.