OK, so I'm rarely in jeopardy, but I write woman-in-jeopardy novels—otherwise called "Modern Gothics"—and this is my blog. It will probably have lots of time between posts, but I'll try not to bore you. Welcome.

Monday, August 5, 2013

Adventure in the Air

Today’s Adventure: Summerset Abbey: Spring Awakening, by T.J. Brown

10 Great Authors, 10 Unforgettable Adventures. With every “Today’s Adventure” post between August 1 and August 13, you can register to win the featured book and the grand prize of all 10 books. We’ll announce winners on August 14. You may enter today’s giveaway and the grand prize at T.J.’s blog, http://teribrownbooks.com/tjblog/. You’ll find links to all the authors below--follow any of them to keep up with the latest adventures.

And now, T.J. on WWI Women and Their Flying Machines:

Come Josephine in my flying machine
Going up she goes! Up she goes!
Balance yourself like a bird on a beam
In the air she goes! There she goes!
Up, up, a little bit higher
Oh! My! The moon is on fire
Come Josephine in my flying machine
Going up, all on, Goodbye!
(lyrics by Alfred Bryan, original music by Fred Fisher, first published 1910)

     Aeroplanes play a big part in the Summerset Abbey trilogy and the eldest sister, Rowena, becomes a volunteer pilot in World War One. Did I stretch the truth too far or did I not go far enough?  Through my research I found that while the numbers were small, there were women who flew actual combat and reconnaissance missions during the war and many more who worked in aeroplane production. The following women were pilots during the war when aircraft technology was in its earliest stages: 

      Helene Dutrieu flew reconnaissance flights from Paris to check on German troop movements. 

      Marie Marvingt flew bombing missions over Germany and was probably the first women to fly actual combat missions. 

      Russia had several such daring aviatrixes: Princess Eugenie M. Shakovskaya, Helen P. Samsonova, Princess Sophie A. Dolgorukaya and Nadeshda Degtereva all flew during the war, though in different capacities.

It’s important to remember just what a fledging science aircraft actually was. For the first two years of WWI, the average life expectancy for pilots was 10-15 days to three weeks due to the rushed training and the rapid increase of the quality of German planes.

In Summerset Abbey: Spring Awakening, Rowena volunteers to transport newly built aeroplanes, as well as flying key officials,  to various military bases. When the series begins, Rowena is diffident and a bit lost. She is searching for her purpose in life. When she takes to the air for the first time as a passenger, she knows immediately that she has found it. Flying becomes her passion and she does most of her growing as a character while in the air. Volunteering for the war effort gives her adventurous spirit an outlet and changes her outlook on life.

Don’t forget to enter at T.J.’s blog, http://teribrownbooks.com/tjblog/. Keep up with the latest adventures and chances to win through any of the authors:
Alison Atlee, The Typewriter Girl     Facebook
Jessica Brockmole, Letters from Skye          Facebook
T.J. Brown, Summerset Abbey: Spring Awakening  Facebook
Sarah Jio, The Last Camellia            Facebook
Susanna Kearsley, The Firebird       Facebook
Katherine Keenum, Where the Light Falls 
Stephanie Lehmann, Astor Place Vintage   Facebook
Kate Noble, Let It Be Me        Facebook
Deanna Raybourn, A Spear of Summer Grass       Facebook
Lauren Willig, The Ashford Affair   Facebook

The adventures continue tomorrow with Alison Atlee's The Typewriter Girl, whose heroine steps off the railway platform in the seaside resort of Idensea and into an adventure she could never have foreseen. 

Alison spent her childhood re-enacting Little Women and trying to fashion 19th century wardrobes for her Barbie dolls. Happily, these activities turned out to be good preparation for writing historical novels. She now lives in Kentucky.

Be sure to come back tomorrow to read Alison's guest post and find out how to win a copy of her book.

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