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Gods of Tin: The Flying Years

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    Available in PDF - DJVU Format | Gods of Tin: The Flying Years.pdf | Language: ENGLISH
    James Salter(Author) Jessica Benton(Editor) William Benton(Editor)

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A singular life often circles around a singular moment, an occasion when one's life in the world is defined forever and the emotional vocabulary set. For the extraordinary writer James Salter, this moment was contained in the fighter planes over Korea where, during his young manhood, he flew more than one hundred missions.

James Salter is considered one of America's greatest prose stylists. The Arm of Flesh (later revised and retitled Cassada) and his first novel, The Hunters, are legendary in military circles for their descriptions of flying and aerial combat. A former Air Force pilot who flew F-86 fighters in Korea, Salter writes with matchless insight about the terror and exhilaration of the pilot's life.

James Salter is considered one of America's greatest prose stylists. A former Air Force pilot who flew F-86 fighters in Korea, Salter writes with matchless insight about the terror and exhilaration of the pilot's life.

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Review Text

  • By P. J. Connolly on 21 November 2012

    This book is something of a hybrid, part diary and part fiction. James Salter was a United States Air Force officer in the 1940's/50's who subsequently became an author of some acclaimed novels. The editors have combined extracts from his novels with genuine autobiography. This takes a bit of getting used to as it is not always obvious when you are reading fiction and when non-fiction. In a strange kind of way it does end up working. Salter attended West Point and subsequently became a fighter pilot flying F.86 Sabres in combat in Korea and subsequently in Germany. The book straddles all these periods but the central period in Korea is the most dramatic part. There he flew a tour of 100 combat missions mostly taken up with flying air to air combat missions with North Korean Mig-15's. Throughout the Book the author's exhilaration in the sheer pleasure of flying is clear. This could turn quickly to panic or terror as witness his experience of crash landing at night after getting lost during a training exercise and running out of fuel. This happened in Korea more deliberately as combat far from base quickly burned up fuel and the aircraft had to be nursed back to base sometimes gliding back during the last stage for a deadstick landing. Salter writes very well with an elegaic, at times, melancholy note. This is a good book to read if you would like to know why pilots want to fly and what it feels like to be in a dogfight.

  • By Smithy on 7 May 2015

    A spellbinding collection of James Salter's writing about flying, drawn from: his first and second novels, "The Hunters" and "The Arm and the Flesh" (later "Cassada"); his memoir, "Burning the Days"; and a previously unpublished journal that he kept whilst a fighter pilot with the USAF's 335th Fighter Interceptor Squadron during the Korean War. Salter's writing is beautiful, he is the most amazing wordsmith, he can make the words dance on the page and he conjures the feeling and emotions of flight like no other writer I am just grateful that I was able to track down a signed copy of this brilliant book.

  • By Guest on 6 November 2014

    Reasonable abbreviated anthology of Salter's fiction and non fiction writing on a fast jet flying life. Did not inspire me to read more.

  • By Ian Black on 10 June 2013

    just the best book about flying in the Korean War and the worlds greatest author ! suffice to say i loved it

  • By simon jakubowski on 17 May 2015

    A stunning book poetically written , thoroughly enjoyed it !


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