31 MAY 1930, Page 28

Three Books on Flying

The World's Aeroplanes and Airships. By G. Gibbard Jackson. (Sampson Low, Marston. 6s.)

The Airway to See Europe. By Eleanor Elsner. (Marriott. 6s.) Ma. GOLDSTROM has not only had the advantage of personal friendship with Mr. Orville Wright, the great pioneer of

aviation, but he has kept in close touch with modern flying and was one of the first publicists to make the trans-continental journey of the United States by air. Iris Bistory is probably

the most interesting and accurate of those published on aviation. Full credit is given to the achievements of the Englishmen who were the first to fly the Atlantic by aeroplane

and airship. The book is well documented and planned and illustrated, the text free from exaggeration and eminently readable. If we had to choose one book on flying which

gave in succinct form all that had been thought and done on the subject from earliest times to the present day, we should choose this. Mr. Goldstrom has material for twenty volumes : it is something of a feat to have compressed without distorting such a mass of facts.

Mr. Gibbard Jackson's book, with similar scope, suffers from lack of an index, but both its price and the fact that it gives more prominence to our own national problems in aviation, will secure it a wide public. There are some excellent illustrations, both in colour and in black-and-white, and a

full account of British aircraft construction which should do much to acquaint the public with what is being done

in this vitally important industry. But .when Mr. Jackson

goes further afield he is not always trustworthy. Lindbergh's flight is sketchily told, and the name of his famous rival, Fonck, the war " ace," is twice given as Fouch. Again, in the account of the first Atlantic flight, Alcoa is represented as knowing. by his indicator that " they were travelling at the rate of 128 miles- an , hour." To the average reader ." travelling " will -convey the impression that they were travelling at that rata over the sca; which was not so.

Mrs. Elsner is an .experienced voyager and an agreeable writer : as Lord . Thomson says in his introduction : " She

describes the joys and thrills of air travel in an appropriately breezy style." Between Corsica and Tunis she met with a forced landing due to a broken induction pipe, and gave the pilot the stopper of her water bottle to repair the damage. Other

excitements she had, but book is more a guide to sight- seeing without seasickness, than a record of adventure. We believe that many intending travellers will follow Mrs.

Elsner's example if they read her pleasant book.