the alfmeister

a figment of reality's imagination

Book Review…Hunting Warbirds


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This is a series of tales following those people who locate, sell, buy, trade and restore WWII-era planes. The main story focuses on the salvage attempt on the Kee Bird, a B-29 bomber which crash-landed in Greenland in ’47, 45 years before these guys look to literally fly it out! It is a fascinating story with highs and lows, politics, drama, heartbreak and even death. I was left incredulous with the chapter narrating the actual take off of this ‘bird’.
It also follows another hunter finding a B-17 in remote Alaska for a millionaire, and the same guy trying to locate two more sitting on the bottom of Greenland fjords. The book is interspersed with frank discussions with people who have the money and storage for this passion – the eccentric Walter Soplata who travels the country salvaging any warbird part he can, Kermit Weeks, who is considered to have the largest private collection of WWII warbirds, and of course the men who travel the world looking for them – Gary Larkins and Darryl Greenameyer.
Even if you don’t really get into the whole plane thing, WWII, or the general subject matter, this is a well written document on one of the most expensive hobby’s going around.
4 out of 5 – disappointed with the photo library, it would have been good to have more photos supporting the Kee Bird salvage.

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