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The Happy Bottom Riding Club

Author: Lauren Kessler
Publisher: Random House
ISBN: 030776964X
Size: 19.66 MB
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Pancho Barnes was a force of nature, a woman who lived a big, messy, colorful, unconventional life. She ran through three fortunes, four husbands, and countless lovers. She outflew Amelia Earhart, outsmarted Howard Hughes, outdrank the Mexican Army, and out- maneuvered the U.S. government. In The Happy Bottom Riding Club, award-winning author Lauren Kessler tells the story of a high-spirited, headstrong woman who was proud of her successes, unabashed by her failures, and the architect of her own legend. Florence "Pancho" Barnes was a California heiress who inherited a love of flying from her grandfather, a pioneer balloonist in the Civil War. Faced with a future of domesticity and upper-crust pretensions, she ran away from her responsibilities as wife and mother to create her own life. She cruised South America. She trekked through Mexico astride a burro. She hitchhiked halfway across the United States. Then, in the late 1920s, she took to the skies, one of a handful of female pilots. She was a barnstormer, a racer, a cross-country flier, and a Hollywood stunt pilot. She was, for a time, "the fastest woman on earth," flying the fastest civilian airplane in the world. She was an intimate of movie stars, a script doctor for the great director Erich von Stroheim, and, later in life, a drinking buddy of the supersonic jet jockey Chuck Yeager. She ran a wild and wildly successful desert watering hole known as the Happy Bottom Riding Club, the raucous bar and grill depicted in The Right Stuff. In The Happy Bottom Riding Club, Lauren Kessler presents a portrait, both authoritative and affectionate, of a woman who didn't play by women's rules, a woman of large appetites--emotional, financial, and sexual--who called herself "the greatest conversation piece that ever existed." From the Hardcover edition.


Author: Barbara Hunter Schultz
Size: 30.93 MB
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PANCHO BARNES was one of aviation's most colorful members. Her alliance with aviation was sometimes outlandish, sometimes exemplary, but always dedicated. The granddaughter of famous balloonist Professor Thaddeus Lowe, PANCHO barnstormed her way through the early days of flight. She flew in the 1929 Powder Puff Derby & captured the women's speed record in 1930. Her peers recognized her for her competency in the air & her unequivocal generosity on the ground. Counted among PANCHO's friends were Jimmy Doolittle, Amelia Earhart, Howard Hughes, & Chuck Yeager. History credits PANCHO with the formation of both the Women's Air Reserve & the Association of Motion Picture Pilots. PANCHO's Happy Bottom riding club, next door to Edwards Air Force Base in California, became the ultimate debriefing room in the '50s. Hundred of test pilots, those with the 'right stuff', let off steam at PANCHO's - & mingled with her beautiful hostesses. When the Air Force expanded, they branded her a 'madam' & her club, a house of prostitution. PANCHO sued the government for slander & vindicated her good name. PANCHO's story is spun with treks through primitive jungles, fast living, & a renown elocution of profanity. She was a unique, one-of-a-kind character who became a 'legend' in her own time. To order contact: Little Buttes Publishing Co., P.O. Box 2043, Lancaster, CA 93539; (805) 948-0577.

Clever Girl

Author: Lauren Kessler
Publisher: Harper Collins
ISBN: 9780061740473
Size: 47.42 MB
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Communists vilified her as a raging neurotic. Leftists dismissed her as a confused idealist. Her family pitied her as an exploited lover. Some said she was a traitor, a stooge, a mercenary and a grandstander. To others she was a true American heroine—fearless, principled, bold and resolute. Congressional committees loved her. The FBI hailed her as an avenging angel. The Catholics embraced her. But the fact is, more than half a century after she captured the headlines as the "Red Spy Queen," Elizabeth Bentley remains a mystery. New England-born, conservatively raised, and Vassar-educated, Bentley was groomed for a quiet life, a small life, which she explored briefly in the 1920s as a teacher, instructing well-heeled young women on the beauty of Romance languages at an east coast boarding school. But in her mid-twenties, she rejected both past and future and set herself on an entirely new course. In the 1930s she embraced communism and fell in love with an undercover KGB agent who initiated her into the world of espionage. By the time America plunged into WWII, Elizabeth Bentley was directing the operations of the two largest spy rings in America. Eventually, she had eighty people in her secret apparatus, half of them employees of the federal government. Her sources were everywhere: in the departments of Treasury and Commerce, in New Deal agencies, in the top-secret OSS (the precursor to the CIA), on Congressional committees, even in the Oval Office. When she defected in 1945 and told her story—first to the FBI and then at a series of public hearings and trials—she was catapulted to tabloid fame as the "Red Spy Queen," ushering in, almost single-handedly, the McCarthy Era. She was the government’s star witness, the FBI’s most important informer, and the darling of the Catholic anti-Communist movement. Her disclosures and accusations put a halt to Russian spying for years and helped to set the tone of American postwar political life. But who was she? A smart, independent woman who made her choices freely, right and wrong, and had the strength of character to see them through? Or was she used and manipulated by others? Clever Girl is the definitive biography of a conflicted American woman and her controversial legacy. Set against the backdrop of the political drama that defined mid-twentieth century America, it explores the spy case whose explosive domestic and foreign policy repercussions have been debated for decades but not fully revealed—until now.

A History Of Murphy S Law

Author: Nick T. Spark
ISBN: 0978638891
Size: 76.48 MB
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Murphy's Law is one of the most well-recognized statements of philosophy known to man. Tipped off by his next door neighbor that Murphy may have worked at Edwards Air Force Base, and that the Law may have come into being after a rocket sled experiment went awry, author Nick T. Spark beings a Quixotic quest to learn the truth. His attempts to pin down the mysterious origins of The Law and to answer the eternal question, "Who was Murphy and what is the true meaning of Murphy's Law?" are both amusing and relevatory. Read it, and find out why everything you ever thought you knew about Murphy's Law -- is wrong.

Powder Puff Derby Of 1929

Author: Gene Nora Jessen
Publisher: Sourcebooks, Inc.
ISBN: 9781402229725
Size: 22.35 MB
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The unforgettable true story of the 1929 air race that legitimized female pilots. In 1929, nineteen women set out from Santa Monica, California, in flimsy, propeller driven planes, with a missiona to be the first to cover the 2,759 mile course to Cleveland, Ohio. Dubbed ""The Powder Puff Derby"" by humorist Will Rogers, who covered the race, the competition was aggressive and dangerous. A thrilling narrative, The Powder Puff Derby of 1929 tells the story of the first major female airplane race, whose contestants included Amelia Earhart, the most famous female pilot of her time. Many of the women flew in open cockpits, with no air controllers to help them and often only primitive airports to land on. Yet by facing the hazards with skill and determination, the racers thrilled the nation and pioneered a new future and respect for female aviators. The Powder Puff Derby of 1929 tells the stories of these first female pilots, gutsy and colorful adventurers who flew in air circuses, set altitude and speed records and fought for the right to become part of the male-dominated world of aviation. The book also includes various artifacts of the groundbreaking race, including priceless, never-before-published black and white photos, as well as Air Force maps of the terrain over which the women flew. An inspiring story of confidence and persistence, The Powder Puff Derby of 1929 captures a defining moment in the history of aviation and women's rights."

The Last Pilot

Author: Benjamin Johncock
Publisher: Myriad Editions
ISBN: 1908434856
Size: 15.52 MB
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With echoes of Raymond Carver as well as Tom Wolfe's The Right Stuff and Richard Yates' Revolutionary Road, The Last Pilot re-ignites the thrill and excitement of the space race through the story of one man's courage in the face of unthinkable loss. Set against the backdrop of one of the most emotionally charged periods in American history, The Last Pilot begins in the bone-dry Mojave Desert during the late 1940s, where US Air Force test pilots are racing to break the sound barrier. Among the exalted few is Jim Harrison: dedicated to his wife, Grace, and their baby daughter. By the 1960s, the space race is underway and Harrison and his colleagues are offered a place in history as the world's first astronauts. But when his young family is thrown into crisis, Jim is faced with a decision that will affect the course of the rest of his life - whether to accept his ticket to the moon and at what cost.

Stubborn Twig

Author: Lauren Kessler
ISBN: 9780870714177
Size: 72.45 MB
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The story of one Japanese American family's century-long struggle to adjust, endure and ultimately triumph in their new country, which starts with the arrival of Masuo Yasui in America in 1903.

The Saga Of Pappy Gunn

Author: George Churchill Kenney
ISBN: 1387652567
Size: 68.55 MB
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The Saga of Pappy Gunn is the biography of heroic World War 2 Air Force fighter pilot, Colonel Paul Irving Gunn.

Missing Star

Author: Don Westenhaver
Publisher: First Edition Design Pub.
ISBN: 1506903673
Size: 44.77 MB
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Danny Parker, a pilot wounded in the Great War, returns home to Long Beach, California, in 1919 hoping to reconcile with his former girlfriend, Joyce Villareal, who is now a silent movie star. But Joyce has disappeared. Danny and Joyce were best friends since first grade. As juniors in high school their friendship became romantic. But just before graduation, Danny surprised Joyce by announcing he planned to study for the priesthood. Angry and hurt, she broke up with him and moved to Hollywood to become an actress at Paramount. Three years later, he left the seminary and enlisted in the Marines, eventually becoming one of the first Marine aviators. He crashes in France and barely survives a horrendous battle. Finally home in Long Beach, he has no desire to return to the seminary or the service. His physical wounds have healed but not the emotional trauma of death and destruction from so many months of combat. His only plan is to resume a relationship with Joyce, if she’ll have him. Bu first he has to find her. Danny searches her bungalow near Griffith Park, finding a hidden diary which mentions dates with three men, whom she refers to as the Comedian, the Daredevil, and the Producer. He visits Paramount Pictures in Hollywood, where Joyce has been filming Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde with John Barrymore. Paramount assigns a detective to the case. The Los Angeles Police Department is strangely unconcerned. The search for Joyce has given Danny’s life meaning again. He enlists the help of the stunt pilot who taught him to fly, an old priest scarred by the Indian Wars, a police chief who prefers justice to politics, and a big tent evangelist who preaches women’s rights. Clues lead to a former Barnum & Bailey showman who owns hundreds of Nickelodeon theaters and is now running for mayor of Los Angeles. Keywords: Long Beach, Silent Movies, Signal Hill, Great War, Historical Fiction, Suspense, Oil, actress, aviation, corruption

Chasing The Wind

Author: Steve Fossett
Publisher: Random House
ISBN: 0753541785
Size: 50.96 MB
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In 2005, just two years before his untimely death in a plane crash, Steve Fossett completed the first solo, non-stop, non-refuelled circumnavigation of the world at the helm of the Virgin Atlantic GlobalFlyer. But what made someone like Steve give up a secure, wellpaid job for the romantic, yet dangerous world of the adventurer? His adventurous spirit has piqued the intrigue of his fellow competitors and sports aficionados, and attracted the notice of the world. Written just one year before his tragic death in 2007, in this dynamic autobiography Steve Fossett shares his inspirational stories in a personal, intimate voice and candidly recounts the milestones, challenges and victories that have made up his much-heralded career and paved the way to his 109 world records.