Buchnummer des Verkäufers
Winner of the Author's Club Best First Novel Award
A Finalist for the East Anglian Book Award for Fiction
“The Last Pilot made me cry and brought back all my old Right Stuff feels. A brilliant debut. I loved it.”―Helen Macdonald, author of H is for Hawk
Jim Harrison is a test pilot in the United States Air Force, one of the exalted few. He spends his days cheating death in the skies above the Mojave Desert and his nights at his friend Pancho’s bar, often with his wife, Grace. She and Harrison are secretly desperate for a child, and when, unexpectedly, Grace learns that she is pregnant, the two are overjoyed. America becomes swept up in the fervor of the Space Race, while Harrison turns his attention home to welcome his daughter, Florence, into the world. But as he and Grace confront thrills and challenges of parenthood, they are met with sudden tragedy.
The aftermath will haunt the Harrisons and strain their marriage, as Jim struggles to make life-and-death decisions under circumstances that are altogether new. Set against the backdrop of one of the most emotionally charged periods in American history, The Last Pilot by Benjamin Johncock is the mesmerizing story of a couple’s crisis of faith―in themselves, and in each another―and the limits they test to rediscover it.
An Amazon Best Book of July 2015: The Last Pilot is filled with fast planes, wide desert, skies larger than the land, and characters whose aches and pains, hopes and dreams quickly become your own. Jim Harrison is an Air Force test pilot in the 1950s – he flies planes at Mach-speed in the name of science, speed and as the years go by, to beat the Soviets – and returns home in between flights to a wife he loves and a bar with a cast of characters that is as devoted to flight as he is. Harrison and his wife, Grace, have been hoping desperately for a child, and when she finally gives birth all seems right in the world. But after two years of life, their daughter passes away: it is heart-pounding and tragic. As his wife retreats, he throws himself at work, becoming one of the first astronauts selected to go to the moon, but his daughter’s death has affected him far more than he realizes. Tightly told with searing uncomplicated prose, The Last Pilot is as engaging for its emotional gravitas as it is for its enthralling story of the race to space – I couldn’t put it down. --Al Woodworth
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