Review by Peta Carolan: What If You Fly?

What If You Fly book cover

Funnel Web, Francesca, Frank, Frances! Each name tells an individual story, each of them layered and epic! Pulsating with twists and adventure, this book is just too exciting.

Love makes us do many things but does it make you go all bad ass secret spy, learn weaponry, pretend to be the opposite sex, learn French, learn mechanics, learn to fly a plane, learn to sing, become a famous performer and become the mistress of a powerful German scientist to seek their plans amidst the Second World War? All in order to get your brother and man back? Nineteen-year-old Francesca does.

Finally, we have a story where the male is captured and the female is the hero. And I was left absolutely routing for the heroine!

This entangled cross-genre is an epic adventure, historical fiction and coming of age book that follows Francesca, a nineteen-year-old girl whose brother is removed to fight in the war and her immigrant Italian boyfriend who was framed for a murder, was then sent off to war as punishment. Despite her sweet nature, Francesca goes to war disguised as a male plane mechanic, steals a plane and is off to find her loved ones. And so, the adventure begins…

I was pleasantly surprised. Booker skilfully describes the challenges posed during the 1940’s era in Australia by covering racism, immigration, sexism, power and political and economic instability.

We also discover another side of women’s roles during the Second World War as women were used as spies for the first time to deliver messages unnoticed. With Francesca being so young, she was able to do this successfully, almost! Although, it is hard to believe her age, there are multiple naive and impulsive decisions that do make her character believable.  

This is a clever interpretation of life back in the 1940’s with of course, a wonderful and unapologetic creative exploration.

To buy the inspiring What If You Fly? visit Hawkeye Books.

You can read more of Peta Carolan’s reviews here.

Want to learn more about author Camille Booker, then pop over to her author page here.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.