Novels about Airlines – Which books do you recommend?Back to Forum
Many of us will be looking forward to our summer holidays soon and some of us will be taking books to read.
One genre that seems to be quite sparse are good novels based around the running of an airline. I have a recommendation to share but I would love to hear yours as well.
I’ve just finished reading “Round the Bend” by Nevil Shute, first published in 1951. Shute’s books have always had an aviation or transport related theme and he has been a family favourite from when I was a kid but somehow I’ve never read this story. My feeling now is one of serious regret at missing out on this superb novel when I was younger.
The story is about an aircraft engineer who sets up an airline in the Persian Gulf after WW2. Based in Bahrain, he ends up providing freight & passenger charters throughout Asia. Along the way he has to find customers, recruit staff, buy aircraft, maintain them, get finance, deal with local politics, plan his operations and so many other matters. It’s an absolute education as to how to start an airline in the late 1940s but I doubt the issues the story tackles are any different to today, 75 years later. This is without mentioning the key theme of the book which Shute blends brilliantly with all of the above. If aviation and airlines interest you, you will enjoy this book.
So that’s one recommendation but then I started to think about what other airline related novels there are. The key requirement is that the airline must be the centrepiece of the novel with the stories flowing around it. I immediately struggled to think of others so I thought I would throw it open to you!14 Jul 2022
at 12:4318 Jul 2022
Both are excellent, though the Frater is travel writing, I think, rather than a novel.
Flying, by Henry Sutton
For a non-fiction choice, I’ve read
Beyond Lion Rock: The Story of Cathay Pacific Airways by Gavin Young
Ryanair: How a Small Irish Airline Conquered Europe18 Jul 2022
I also have this one but to be honest I could not make head or tail of it18 Jul 2022
What an interesting topic!
I’ve just finished Jet Boss by Captain Laura Savino. Okay, it’s non-fiction but a good insight into a female in a man’s world.
Another pilot, Karlene Petitt, has written the “Flight for ….” fiction series which are based on her experiences as an airline pilot. She’s also done a couple of non-fiction books. Haven’t read them, yet.19 Jul 2022