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Sled Driver: Flying the World's Fastest Jet [Hardcover]

Brian Shul , Sheila Kathleen O'Grady
5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)

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Most helpful customer reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Ultra Sonic Super Spy June 8 2004
By A Customer
Format:Hardcover
The amazingly true story of Sled Driver was about a very daring pilot that flew one of the most secretive airplanes in history, the SR-71. Brain Shul, the author and the main personality throughout the book, started as a military fighter pilot, was one of the few people in the world to be to be trained to fly the SR-71 "Black Bird" or the "Sled" as it is sometimes called, let alone actually fly the beast, was chosen to fly the airplane. Two months of severe flight simulating and text manual reading, Brain is chosen to fly the "Sled" and is partnered with the only black man to ever fly the SR-7, Walt Watson. These two men are paired for their entire career of flying the SR-71. The rest of the book are tales of wondrous experiences and frightful mishaps that nearly take their lives, though they always came out strong.
In every book there are at least on thing that does not click with the reader, and in this book this rule holds true. The only problem I experienced while reading this book was the odd placement of pictures. Whenever the Author got into a serious thought or story, the next page would have a picture or series of pictures that would make you lose your trail of thought and provoke you to look at the photos. This severely annoyed me most of the way through the book. I don't quit think the author was thinking to deeply into the placement of the photos or he's a total genius and didn't want you to get completely trapped into his story, giving you time to think about what just happened or recollect on what exactly he was saying.
Of course there are good or great things about a book or the reader would stop reading it, unless he was forced to read it like I was in grade school and throughout High School. The pictures were phenomenal, even though their placement was off.
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5.0 out of 5 stars The Greatest Tribute to the Greatest Airplane Nov. 24 2003
Format:Hardcover
This work is a masterpiece of sight and sound; reading Shul's writing you feel like you're right there with him, at the controls of the greatest, most beautiful airplane anyone ever built.
I was given an earlier edition of this book (back whent he price wasa only $57) and DEEPLY regret that I cannot afford the Special Edition to replace the other, which was stolen.
If you CAN afford it, BUY IT NOW AND REJOICE! It simply IS that good. Kudos to Kelly Johnson (the plane's designer) and Kudos to Brian Shul for such a great book!
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars great book if you can ever find a copy June 14 2004
By A Customer
Format:Hardcover
yes i know that the 'sled driver' by shul is a fantastic book!!
and yes indeed, i have yet to read it
at nearly 1/2 a grand to purchase, i believe i shall never read it
i find it wonderful that the author wants to release another limited printing of 3500 copies
once again, i am sure to be left out of the fold
what is the motivation here?
am i not to ever get a crack at reading this fine work??
am i expected to ever get a truthful answer to my questions??
being a realist and a pilot, i must say its a lousey day for v.f.r
warmest regards to all those profiting at my expense
tim
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 4.9 out of 5 stars  24 reviews
163 of 170 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Author Speaks Jan. 21 2002
By Brian Shul - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
Dear Sir,
I am the author of Sled Driver, plus several other books that you list. PLEASE make the following corrections. Remove Sheila Kathleen O'Grady's name from the author's line, she was the typist, not an author. Also, there is no such book as The Challenge, also listed under my name. My publisher erroneously gave that to you in hopes it would be done, and it was not. They are now out of business. Finally, Sled Driver went out of print last year-HOWEVER-the big news is that in 2003 I have plans to re-issue the book in a newer, prettier, limited edition version. I hope to work with you in marketing it through your page. There will only be 3200 limited edition copies. I would love to talk to someone there about this upcoming project. This book is so popular and I get email weekly concerning it. Is there a number, or email that I could use to contact someone there who is interested in this information. I know this is not exactly a book review, but I have tried in the past to email you and the above changes I requested were never instituted. Sled Driver is returning and I will have more information about it for you by this summer. Please email me with any numbers I may contact to straighten out these errors and talk about the return of a very popular book. Thank you. Yes, I really am the author, Brian Shul 530-742-1000.
26 of 28 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars This book's quality is equal to that of the Blackbird itself Feb. 16 2000
By JOHN GAVEL - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
From the moment I picked up a copy of "Sled Driver", I was hooked. The text was not highly technical, but gave me the feeling of actually being in the cockpit. I could vividly imagine the rush of acceleration on takeoff, the surreal world at 80,000 feet, the frustration of refueling under adverse conditions. I was proud to be an American, knowing that our technology was far superior to that of the Soviet's, or anyone else's. I laughed in distain as I imagined the frustration and anger of communist leaders as they continually failed in their futile attempts to shoot the plane down. And I shed a few tears when I read about the closing of the SR-71 program.
Complimenting the excellent text (written in easy to read large print) were the best pictures of the SR-71 that I have ever seen. Not just a few either, but lots of big, beautiful glossy color prints I'd be proud to hang on my wall.
This book makes the SR-71 Blackbird come alive. I highly recommend it to anyone even remotely interested in military aviation.
15 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Lucky March 2 2005
By Lee Rickmers - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
I got my copy from Brian when he was selling them at an open house at March AFB. He was planted right under the left wing. You could sit in the cockpit of the SR-71 for a photo for $5. That was well worth it! When you look behind you and see all that mass of black titanium, and imagine that you would leave a 30-06 bullet in the dust, it is truly awe inspiring. By the way Brian was signing, to you personally, his Sled Driver books for a paltry $35. My friend who is also a plane nut , got one too. My treat. I also got his second book by mail from him for the same price. He is a great guy who answers his own phone and takes your order himself. He is also very funny. Look him up at the next big airshow you attend. He'll tell you all about "the sled" Lee
15 of 16 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars This book puts you in the drivers seat of the SR-71. April 15 1999
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
This book truly shows the real emotions of the pilot and his backseater. It makes you understand the true love and raw emotions these pilots came to feel for this aircraft. Filled with humor and humility- this book was a joy to read and the photography is awesome.These photos show sights that the average person couldn't even imagine unless they saw them with their own eyes. This is a rare view of the pride these men felt for the airplane and the job they had to do in it. A true joy to read... I recommend it for all to read.
8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Get a front seat perspective of the Sled Dec 9 1999
By A Customer - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover
This book would be worth the money for the pictures alone. It is easy to understand why Brian Shul owns a photo studio these days. As an added bonus, Brian tells a fascinating story of what life is like for the front seat driver of the Sled. I can hardly wait to get his 2nd book, The Untouchables.
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