Yeager reestablished himself as a culture hero with his recent best-selling autobiography; here, Levinson adds ingredients from many other sources and digests it all for younger readers. As a youth, Yeager was not eager to fly, but once in flight school he turned out to be a natural and became a renowned fighter pilot in WW II. Throughout his career, he displayed not only talent for doing the right things in the air, but genius for identifying mechanical and engineering problems. Levinson does a good job of explaining why Yeaget is famous, capturing both his technical brilliance and folksy, patriotic personality. However, the characters and achievements of his family and associates are left far in the background, and the US jet and rocket research effort receives the briefest of historical sketches. The book concludes with a look at Yeager's major film and TV appearances. Still, a clear, thoroughly researched portrait. Brief glossary; index.