FLYING JENNY by Theasa Tuohy
Flying Jenny is a delightful step back in time. The story transports the reader into a bit of history that not many may know about--a history of the first planes and their pilots. It is also a story about two strong women in occupations usually held by men. Jenny Flynn is the daredevil pilot--doing exciting and dangerous stunts. Laura Bailey is the reporter on a New York newspaper. Their lives become entwined as they share an exciting adventure.
Not only did a enjoy this book, but my husband who loves and knows about all kinds of airplanes couldn't put Flying Jenny down.
Theasa Tuohy is a long-time journalist who has happily turned her life experiences and reporting skills to fiction featuring female reporters. She is the daughter and namesake of a pioneering pilot who flew an old-World War I "Jenny" with an OX-5 engine. Theasa worked for five daily newspapers and the Associated Press. Her "first woman" stints included assistant city editor at The Detroit News and the copy desk at The (Newark) Star Ledger.
Her first novel, "The Five O'Clock Follies," was published in 2012. She is currently working on a mystery series set in Paris and is co-author of the book for "Lawrence," an award-winning musical about the life of D. H. Lawrence.
She is a graduate of the University of California at Berkeley and lives in Manhattan.
People are doing all sorts of screwy things in 1929. It is a time of hope, boundless optimism, and prosperity. "Blue Skies" is the song on everyone's lips. The tabloids are full of flagpole sitters, flappers, and marathon dancers. Ever since Charles Lindbergh flew across the Atlantic solo, the entire world has gone nuts over flying. But everyone agrees that the stunt pilots take the cake.
Jenny Flynn defies the odds and conventions in her pursuit of the sky. She attracts the attention of Laura Bailey, a brash reporter crashing through her own glass ceiling at a New York City newspaper. Laura chases the pilot's story--and the truth about her own mysterious father--on a barnstorming escapade from Manhattan to the Midwest.
Flying Jenny offers a vivid portrait of an earlier time when airplanes drew swarming crowd entranced by the pioneers--male and female--of flight.
"The heroes and heroines and the characters Tuohy brings to life in the book were derived from tales told to her by her mother, the daring, petite fire-cracker female pilot (named Theasa as well), who was a contemporary of Will Rogers and friend of Wiley Post, the first pilot to fly solo around the world."
--Life in the Finger Lakes Magazine
"It is August 1929, and this romp through the early days of women's aviation history arrives with all the immediacy of a late-night edition. Theasa Tuohy memorably limns the adventures of not one but two pioneering women. Debutante pilot Jenny Flynn and cub reporter Laura Bailey carry the spunk of Thelma & Louise to new heights as they fight for space in the cockpit and the city room."
--Janet Groth, author of The Receptionist: An Education at The New Yorker