Monday, April 6, 2020

Review: Fighting for Space by Amy Shira Teitel

Fighting for Space
by Amy Shira Teitel

Publisher: Grand Central Publishing
Pages: 448
Format: eARC
Buy the Book: Amazon

Goodreads:  When the space age dawned in the late 1950s, Jackie Cochran held more propeller and jet flying records than any pilot of the twentieth century-man or woman. She had led the Women's Auxiliary Service Pilots during the Second World War, was the first woman to break the sound barrier, ran her own luxury cosmetics company, and counted multiple presidents among her personal friends. She was more qualified than any woman in the world to make the leap from atmosphere to orbit. Yet it was Jerrie Cobb, twenty-five years Jackie's junior and a record-holding pilot in her own right, who finagled her way into taking the same medical tests as the Mercury astronauts. The prospect of flying in space quickly became her obsession.

While the American and international media spun the shocking story of a "woman astronaut" program, Jackie and Jerrie struggled to gain control of the narrative, each hoping to turn the rumored program into their own ideal reality-an issue that ultimately went all the way to Congress.

Kritters Thoughts:  As a note before I get into my review.   I decided to listen to this on audio for many reasons, but one being that I tend to enjoy non fiction more when I read them via audio.  With the working from home I have been doing, I have enjoyed having one audio book to listen to while out on walks with the dog and this was one of them.

Amy Shira Teitel did extensive research on mainly two women, but also on other women and the industries of aeronautics and aviation.  Jackie Cochran may not be a household name for most compared to Amelia Earhart, but Jackie was a part of women in flight and space.  Jerrie Cobb, Jackie's junior, took part in aviation, but was really vital to the movement of women in space and again not a household name like others.  

I liked how the book was put together.  It covered a lot of years with ease.  There was only a bit of technical chatter about flying and space, it was enough to help get some perspective but didn't make me feel like a textbook.  

With my dad as a former NASA and Boeing employee who spent a lot of time working on advancements in aviation, this book had specific meaning to me because I got to see the industry he worked for through a different lens and learn about the years that preceded him joining NASA.  

This book made me want to read more about the history of aviation and aeronautics which is always a good sign when I finish a non fiction read. 

Rating: definitely a good read, but can't read two in a row
Disclosure of Material Connection:  I received one copy of this book free of charge from Grand Central Publishing.  I was not required to write a positive review in exchange for receipt of the book; rather, the opinions expressed in this review are my own.

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