HELICOPTER PILOT by W.E. Butterworth
Kirkus Star


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After Fast Green Car (1965, P. 439-J153) put Tony Fletcher on Madison Avenue. it looked as if the young man had no place to go but up. But that was without reckoning with the inevitable hiatus of a Higher Calling, i.e.: the draft. Some of the power of the P.R. field creeps into Tony's induction -- the book is slightly subtler but just as persuasive as Uncle Sam's finger point to You. Unlike the mass of battle stories that deal with cliched heroism, this one concentrates on the present and on the realities of what life is like from the first days of military service on. As Tony attempts to find his proper niche in the Army (yes, with time a young man with such varied skills as advertising, trucking, Russian, marksmanship, and helicopter flying can find a place compatible with his talents as well as his personality and individual preferences) he faces up to the repelling as well as the favorable aspects of the Service. This is part of the book's effectiveness, and readers will be perfectly convinced that Tony is right as his attitude gradually shifts from passively awaiting the end of his two years' required service to accepting the role of an officer who would be under fire for an extended period of time. Smoothly written (except for an overworked tendency toward a pseudo-Army manual style for descriptions of the mundane) this presents a personable hero against a background boys are extremely eager to know more about.

Pub Date: Jan. 30th, 1966
Publisher: Norton