From the 30-pound Langley model to the Second World War, this is a comprehensive, honest and entertaining history of naval aviation, its incessant battle for recognition and financial aid, the years of lack of equipment, facilities, the sharp differences of opinion in and out of the department. While the authors have had access to official sources, this is quite evidently not an official document, for they are frequently sharply critical. The reasonably good record in World War I, despite inadequacies, insured a long range program until the era of curtailment set in, and the progress of the air arm was gagged by the Bureau of the Budget. Moffett managed against odds to maintain a semblance of a program, and sought assiduously for the most efficient and economical means to keep it moving. Then with the Morrow Board- and with Franklin Roosevelt in the White House progress became the key, but it was 1935 before aviation cadets were authorized, and 1938- and war clouds- before a preparedness program was instituted. Today -- with the new merger setup and another economy conscious Congress, aviation heads into new blocks. Lots of human interest material and anecdote to liven what might have been dry history.