4 out of 4 stars
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Cleared for Takeoff by John R. "Rusty" Potter is an account of the author's personal experience in the aviation industry, especially his role as an air traffic controller.
In Cleared for Takeoff, John, unsure of his future direction, joins the Navy while still in his senior year at Princeton University. After a series of tests, a physical examination, and a background check, he got the prestigious Naval Aviation Observer Badge. He is told to report for training after graduation on the condition that he stays clean. He eventually reports for training at the Naval Air Station, Pensacola, and is introduced to a whole new world. He soon falls in love with flying and joins a flying club, where he learns how to pilot a plane. However, he soon learns that getting employed as a pilot for major U.S. carriers isn't as easy as he thinks.
The author tells the intriguing and eventful story of his years in the field of air traffic control. In the book, he recounts his aviation experience, which begins officially at the Naval Air Station, Pensacola. He tells his story such that everyone will find it easy to understand. He details each experience in an unforced and conversational manner, putting his interactions with pilots as an air traffic controller in a dialogue-like form. Due to this, anyone who has an interest in air traffic control and aviation, in general, will find his story very expository and exciting.
In telling his story, the author maintains his course, making it mainly about his career experience and bringing very little outside details into the story. This is in direct contrast to several memoirs I've read, where authors tend to stray a lot from the main topic. This doesn't mean that the author employs a better strategy; it's just not common. As a result, the book ends up being all it is expected to be. The author's writing style is suitable for this sort of memoir.
I found the book interesting and intriguing. For someone interested in the aviation world like myself, the book helped me understand airport activities better. I'd been to the airport a couple of times. However, after reading this book, I was more eager to see all the airport routine activities I'd read in this book play out before my eyes.
All in all, this book deserved a perfect rating. The editing was professional, as there were not many errors I found. Honestly, there was nothing I disliked about the book. Therefore, I'd rate it 4 out of 4 stars. It was indeed an expository read, and I'd recommend it to lovers of aviation stories, nonfiction, and everyone who would want to pursue a career in the aviation industry.
Cleared for Takeoff
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