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Forgotten Aviator: The Adventures of Royal Leonard Paperback – July 27, 2011


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Forgotten Aviator: The Adventures of Royal Leonard + China's Wings: War, Intrigue, Romance, and Adventure in the Middle Kingdom During the Golden Age of Flight + An Airline at War: The Story of China National Aviation Corporation and its Men
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Dog Ear Publishing, LLC (July 27, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1608449297
  • ISBN-13: 978-1608449293
  • Product Dimensions: 0.6 x 5.9 x 8.9 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 13.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #622,859 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

This is a must read with tales of Howard Hughes, Charles Lindbergh, Jimmy Doolittle, Wiley Post, Will Rogers, and Jackie Cochran.  He was a personal pilot to a Manchurian warlord who kidnapped Chinese Dictator Chiang Kai-shek, and was chosen to command a projected Flying Tigers bomber group.
SeniorMagLive...if you're 49 or plan to be!   March 2012

"Barry Martin has nicely filled in the details of Leonard's life...it all makes for a fascinating biography."
reviewed by Daniel Ford, Smithsonian Air & Space Magazine - May 2012

From the Publisher

"If Royal's story were told in a novel," says long-time China pilot and author Felix Smith, "nobody would believe it all could have happened to one man."

"Barry Martin brings us face-to-face with another name, Royal Leonard, that offers the same adventure and romance as names we already know, Charles Lindbergh, Jimmy Doolittle, and Claire Chennault. The author brings out the drama and danger of the Golden Age of American Aviation and the Sino-Japanese War. This book is a product of dedicated research that makes a significant contribution to aviation history." Robert L. Willett, Jr. author of An Airline at War: The Story of China National Aviation Corporation and its Men.


More About the Author

Barry S. Martin graduated from the College of William and Mary,earned a M.A in History at the University of Washington and a J.D. from UC Berkeley. He lives in Sacramento with his wife, Carolyn, and cocker spaniel.
After winning a trip to China in 1988, he discovered Royal Leonard's 1942 memoir about his adventures as Chiang Kai-shek's personal pilot. This book launched Barry into years of reasearch and interviews wih Leonard's family and others connected to dramatic events during the Golden Age of Amercan Aviation and in war-torn China (1935-1943).
Martin signed his book at the Smithsonian Air & Space Museums in April and at the Museum of Flight in Seattle in June 2012.

Customer Reviews

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The book could easily be made into a great movie.
R. Barr
As a retired history teacher, this is one of the most well documented accounts of an important historical figure that I have ever read.
DCooper
Royal worked and flew with some of best known pilots in the country.
Robert O. Chilcoat

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By R. Barr on October 30, 2011
Format: Paperback
We read about the heroics of many of the pilots from WW II but few of us know about the early pilots that pioneered the mail routes for the postal service and pushed aviation from novelty "barnstorming" and racing, to what it has become today.
Forgotten Aviator chronicals the life of Royal Leonard, one of these early pioneers as progressed from flying early, very risky, mail routes, to even more dangerous exploits as one of the private pilots for Chiang Kai-shek during a period when China was torn apart politically, and at war with the Japanese. The book could easily be made into a great movie.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By DCooper on December 18, 2011
Format: Paperback
As a retired history teacher, this is one of the most well documented accounts of an important historical figure that I have ever read. It is fascinating how Martin has woven Leonard's family letters, articles, documents and personal interviews into an attention-getting story of Royal Leonard's life. Information about what was happening in aviation and globally during this time offers the reader the opportunity to learn of little known details. Took him 20 years, but he surely did his homework to write this book! I really liked it.
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Format: Paperback
For anyone who has: strapped on a parachute, found a bullet hole or two in the side of your airplane or had to depart in the lousiest conditions. We all wanted to be a Royal Leonard; who was REAL and ROYAL.
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