I received a copy of Crossing the Horizon free from the publisher (via Netgalley) in exchange for an honest review. This, however, did not change my opinion of the book.
It’s 1927. Charles Lindbergh has recently become a media sensation by completing the first transatlantic flight. Now, the race is on to be the first woman to make the crossing. This story takes a look at three very different and fascinating women who are all hoping to take the crown: Elsie Mackay, daughter of an Earl and the first Englishwoman to receive her pilot’s license; Ruth Elder, who uses her winnings from a beauty pageant to take flying lessons; and Mabel Boll, glamorous society widow who hopes the trip will be her claim to fame.
While I’ve always loved books set in the 1920’s, I was a little bit unsure about one focusing on aviation history. I’ve never really found myself all that interested in the early days of flight. Or the history of flight at all. I knew about Charles Lindbergh (a bit) and that Amelia Earhart was the first woman to accomplish the flight, but beyond that I was clueless. This book, however, changed my mind. It was truly wonderful. Crossing the Horizon was clearly well researched and painted a vivid picture of these three women, their world, and the people around them.
I particularly loved the fact that there were pictures included. When reading historical fiction books, I often find myself seeking out pictures on the primary players on my own. While it’s not really a necessity, I found their inclusion to be a nice touch. Obviously this is a fictionalized account based on real events, but the pictures made it all so much more real, taking these from mere characters, to living, breathing people.
Even without the pictures, I think this would have been a really standout book. Knowing that none of these women were going to be the record holder didn’t take anything away for me. I was hooked and could not wait to find out what happened next. With such brilliantly illustrated characters, I was completely sucked in, anxious to see how their stories would turn out. It’s not a short book, but I was so engrossed it did not take long to finish it.
I cannot recommend this book enough. There is tragedy, humor and a solid dose of girl power. These were all ladies determined to take charge of their own destinies and Laurie Notaro has told their stories beautifully. This is definitely a book I will be rereading. You can pick up your own copy on October 4 or pre-order it now!