In 1966 Kern and Rinker Buck, aged 17 and 15, bought a delapidated piper cub plane, restored it and spent the summer flying it across America. In part, this is the compelling story of that flight, as well as offering readers an insight into issues of family, relationships and independence.
In 1966 Kern and Rinker Buck, aged 17 and 15, bought a delapidated piper cub plane for $300, restored it over the winter in their barn and then spent the summer flying across America. They were the youngest aviators on record ever to fly an aeroplane coast to coast. In part, this is the compelling story of that flight, with writing about aeroplanes, pilots and about being in the air. The Buck brothers were retracing the mythical route west taken by their father, Tom Buck, who in 1932 during the Depression barnstormed around the country as a young pilot himself until financial ruin and a terrible air crash in 1945, in which he lost his leg and another man was killed, changed him utterly. The boy's flight was to fulfil their father's dream and yet, as they move across the country, so they become liberated from this dominating man and also explore their own relationship. This is a book about family, about ties, about masculinity and independence, but Rinker Buck is writing it as much as anything for his own daughters to take them inside a world which was, at the time, exclusively male.
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