3.0 out of 5 stars
Charlies Travels, Dec 26 2011
I have to admit that I am slightly biased writing this review. The author Garth was a flying instructor of mine in the 1970's and Charlie was a fairly well respected pilot at the St. Catharines airport. Being young and impressionable myself at the time, these two were pilots I looked towards for answers I had about the mysterious world of aviation that I wanted to pursue a career in.
So I wanted to read this work for memories of those days long past and to put to bed questions I had during those days as the airport line-boy qualified only to stand on the sidelines and listen while stories unfolded. Not content with pushing the club's airplanes in and out of the hangar or refueling them for the next student, I too went on to span the globe eventually in commercial Hercules operations. In short,I can identify with the participants and the subject.
Garth has taken the liberty of writing the text as if we are all sitting at the club's coffee shop and talking candidly about a very interesting flying career. The paragraphs bounce back and forth between the principal story tellers with Garth enlightening us on the background of the scene being described. At times this can be confusing as to who is telling what but for my own part not hard to follow as I can still hear their voices over the cacophony.
I also particularly liked the chronological order of the events portrayed as this prevented the text from bounding all over the time span and the globe making the reading easier to follow.
There is always a great temptation with works like this to tell too much. Now, who's decision it was to keep the subject matter corralled as it were to palatable bite sized pieces I do not know but suffice to say that some things are better left unsaid in this business and that seems to be also well handled.
For those of you that think Garth and even Charlie might have embellished on events, people, places or things, you would be incorrect. Not only have I travel and experienced to many of the same places, but I have likely talked and worked with the same people! WISIWYG.....what you see (read) is what you get, no liberal creative licence required. True events are ALWAYS more interesting than fiction!
This is a pleasant read for the casual observer, written not only for the lay person but also the professional. Most of you will be coming away decidedly jealous of Charlies adventures during his life time in aviation. He is, and will be a fine fellow in any circle.
As for myself, it was nice to read about those days I was there among that group and read about places and people I knew. More personal I know but still good memories of times long past. Keep this one close for easy reading.