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Daredevil: The Daring Life of Betty Skelton    by Meghan McCarthy order for
by Meghan McCarthy
Order:  USA  Can
Simon & Schuster, 2013 (2013)
Hardcover, e-Book
* *   Reviewed by Bob Walch

Never content to play with dolls like other little girls, Betty Skelton liked to diddle around with a metal airplane. Since her family lived close to the Pensacola naval airbase, little Betty had a perfect seat to watch planes zoom overhead.

By the age of twelve Betty soloed in a bi-plane and on her 16th birthday she got her flying license. Since in the 1940s there weren't many commercial jobs in aviation open to women, Betty became a stunt pilot and became famous for her 'inverted ribbon cut' where she would swoop towards the ground upside down and sever a line held by two people with her propeller.

From airplanes, the amazing young woman moved on to fast cars and she broke the woman's record for speed at the Bonneville Salt Flats by driving 315.75 mph. Then it was on to boat jumping and training to be an astronaut. Unfortunately, she didn't make the Mercury 7 flight. Although she made it through the strenuous training, Betty was left behind, but no matter at least she proved a woman could handle the rigorous preparation.

This picture book for children four years of age and older tells the remarkable story of this little known woman who drove a red Corvette until the day she died because, as she said, 'I just like to go fast!'

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