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Patricia O'Connell Pearson

  • Bethany Beach Books 99 Garfield Pkwy Bethany Beach, DE, 19930 United States (map)
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Meet Patricia O'Connell Pearson, middle grade author of Fly Girls: The Daring American Women Pilots Who Helped Win WWII on August 14th from 6:30pm-8:30pm.

Fly Girls: The Daring American Women Pilots Who Helped Win WWII

In the tradition of Hidden Figures, debut author Patricia Pearson offers a beautifully written account of the remarkable but often forgotten group of female fighter pilots who answered their country’s call in its time of need during World War II.

At the height of World War II, the US Army Airforce faced a desperate need for skilled pilots—but only men were allowed in military airplanes, even if the expert pilots who were training them to fly were women. Through grit and pure determination, 1,100 of these female pilots—who had to prove their worth time and time again—were finally allowed to ferry planes from factories to bases, to tow targets for live ammunition artillery training, to test repaired planes and new equipment, and more.

Though the WASPs lived on military bases, trained as military pilots, wore uniforms, marched in review, and sometimes died violently in the line of duty, they were civilian employees and received less pay than men doing the same jobs and no military benefits, not even for burials.

Their story is one of patriotism, the power of positive attitudes, the love of flying, and the willingness to do good with no concern for personal gain.

Early praise:

"[An] often thrilling tribute to these aviation heroes."
— Publishers Weekly

"[A]n adventurous and tumultuous account. A solid account of women's contributions as aviators during World War II."
— Kirkus Reviews

"It’s a truly inspiring read, and Pearson adeptly addresses the support and censure these fearless and dignified ladies received, and their shamefully drawn-out fight for recognition."
— Booklist, starred review


Earlier Event: August 13
John Micklos, Jr.
Later Event: August 15
Lisa Kahn Schnell