The Wright Brothers

The Wright Brothers

Large Print - 2015
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The story of "the courageous brothers who taught the world how to fly, Wilbur and Orville Wright"--Provided by publisher.
Publisher: Farmington Hills, Michigan : Large Print Press, a part of Gale, Cengage Learning, [2015]
Edition: Large print edition
ISBN: 9781432834340
Branch Call Number: 629.13 McCullough
Characteristics: 583 pages (large print), 48 unnumbered pages of plates : illustrations, portraits, maps ; 23 cm


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RogerDeBlanck Jun 30, 2018

Proving again why he remains among the world’s preeminent historians, McCullough delivers another outstanding book, this time a splendid biography of Wilbur and Orville Wright. In addition to the excitement generated around the brothers’ ingenuity as the first to design a “flying machine,” their story is most inspirational for how self-taught and determined they were in accomplishing their dream. McCullough sets the narrative at a thrilling pace. He moves seamlessly from the brothers’ upbringing in the thriving town of Dayton, Ohio to the sandy dunes of Kitty Hawk, North Carolina where they practiced their initial flights and then to their travels abroad in France where they showcased their flying talents.

In charting the brothers’ innovations, McCullough has the ability to cover the science of aeronautics in an understandable way. He shows how brilliant the brothers were in putting their minds to the task of overcoming one obstacle after another, all of which had stumped aviation inventors for decades. As lifelong learners with a zeal for discovery, the brothers went from building their own bicycles to studying birds to finally developing the first airplane. Their success had a distinctly family influence as both their father and sister, Katharine, played vital roles in encouraging them every step of the way. The brothers’ courage and perseverance resonate throughout the book, and their achievements leave you feeling uplifted with hope for what humanity can achieve through the power of resilience and hard work.

CMLibrary_sdeason Oct 04, 2017

Full of facts and details, this book shares an in-depth look at the brothers and their mission to fly.

CircMary Aug 01, 2017

I was soaring through the sky and tinkering with the plane in the bicycle shop with the Wright Brothers and their sister; I was in the crowd that saw the first airplane fly over the Eiffel Tower in Paris. No one can put you right there like David McCullough. This was my favorite read of 2016.

May 14, 2017

If you want to know how little you know about the Wright Brothers, this is the book to read. I found it fascinating about how much more flying both in the US and in Europe that the brothers did, as well as their close relationship with their spinster sister and their father as well as two other brothers.

Jan 08, 2017

The scope of imagination, the bonds of family, and the power of obsession are all elements of this historical narrative.

Few siblings will have a closer relationship than the brothers Wilbur and Oliver Wright had. The whole story of the first powered flight of a heavier than air craft is built on this relationship. They worked like two halves of the same brain. Just being able to work together in some business was their original goal. Toward this end, it seemed reasonable to take advantage of the current craze for bicycles and start their own repair shop. Eventually the decision was made to build and market their own superbly crafted models. Over time the business expanded into a profitable enterprise. Suddenly the bug bit and the idea of flight began to capture their imaginations.

The brother taught themselves by extensive research and constructing ever more capable gliders. They also knew how to choose skilled and loyal assistants, including their much loved and highly educated younger sister. Over the course of several years they persisted in refining and testing their designs until they were ready to create a lightweight motor to mount on the airframe. Finally, at Kitty Hawk, they achieved their dream.

Both the period leading up to the flight and their adventures and achievements during the years following it are exquisitely documented. The author, David McCullough, never disappoints. He has fashioned a book that chronicles the singular event of flight while also infusing the story with wonderful details and insights into the characters, both central and peripheral to the events.

One of the most fascinating parts of the book, to me, was the story of the Wright family, their closeness and devotion to one another. They really did operate as a unit. Curiously enough, neither of the brothers ever married, perhaps because they always kept themselves so busy.

This is a quick and, admittedly, cursory review. Suffice it to say that I enjoyed the heck out of it.

Dec 24, 2016

Everyone knows about the flight at Kitty Hawk. I had no idea about what happens afterwards. Very well written book and enjoyable read.

Dec 05, 2016

A very good book. Gives one a more comprehensive appreciation of not the just the famous brothers, but the entire Wright family. Towards the end, the book gets bogged down describing their time in Europe in too much detail. Overall, however, a very good way to better understand the iconic aviators.

Sep 03, 2016

This book is much more interesting than I expected it to be. The race to be "first in flight" was dramatic and fraught with deadly peril, and McCullough is a gifted writer who draws upon scores of family letters, newspaper accounts, photographs and other sources to tell the story of an obsession that changed the world. The book is also a rich source of the social and cultural history of one of America's greatest eras. I expected just to skim through it, but wound up reading it carefully and with much pleasure.

Sep 01, 2016

I have completed the book with the print copy, having started it in audio format. I can recommend both formats. Both were superb.
I found the Wright brothers to be a delightful duo and their family to be solid and interesting. The brothers had an unconventional upbringing in that they were allowed to follow their interests and encouraged in their endeavours. They were such a solid, down-to-earth family as well. It was really nice to read about a family that supported each other.
The brothers were genius. They must have been. Without specialized education or funding, they made the most marvelous invention. Everything about aeronautics was unknown. What they discovered over the course of about 10 years was amazing.
This book covers the years of about 1900-1912. McCullough tells a story with detail and interest. This story reads easily, like a novel.

Jul 28, 2016

I highly recommend this book.

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Jun 06, 2015

wordsmithwannabe thinks this title is suitable for 14 years and over


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Oct 01, 2016

Excellent description of a shy, cheerful, optimistic, entrepreneural, mechanical, sensitive man with ingenuity who worked with his brother and never gave up in adveristy. The best dividends come from seeking more knowledge rather than more power. So many lessons in this book. The power of family who encouraged reading and intellectual curiosity. The power of the work ethic. Excellent book.


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Jun 06, 2015

No bird soars in a calm. (Wilbur Wright)


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