Gertrude “Tommy” Tompkins—is still missing. She is the only member of the Women Airforce Service Pilots (WASPs) who flew in WW2 that is. Her life story is interesting although I can safely assume that much of how she felt at any given time is imagined or understood by the author. She was clearly brave and forward thinking despite the culture of the time that she lived. I don’t think it’s much of a spoiler if I say that I wonder if she didn’t crash on purpose. She had reluctantly agreed to marry a man that she liked but did not love, and the WASP’s were due to disband in 60 days. I think it’s a plausible theory anyway. That makes it an even sadder outcome but does bring up plenty of discussion points. What would her life have been like after the war?
I also want to point out that reading about how the WASP’s were chosen and trained including the unfair exclusion of African American women was telling. It’s our history, and we need books to remind us never to repeat that kind of exclusionary behavior.
I’m putting it on the list of books that we will read when we reach WW2 in our American history study.
This is being marketed to middle school, but I think that high school age students, as well as adults, would enjoy it as well.
I was given a DRC in exchange for an honest review.
by James Ure (Author)
Chicago Review Press; 1 edition (July 1, 2017)