Friday, July 21, 2017


Flying Conquistadors

It's hard work, but it's better than working at the hardware store--and maybe it's his ticket to a life of adventure.
When Pan Am's owner recruits Charles Lindbergh, it seems like a dream come true for Oliver. He finds himself working alongside one of his idols, the kind of man he always dreamed of being. But Oliver soon learns Lindbergh is uncomfortable with fame, and struggling with the adoration that greets him wherever he goes.
A promotional trip takes the Pan Am team to Mexico over Mayan ruins. At the fabled site of Chichen Itza, Oliver encounters Carnegie Institution archaeologists working to restore the ancient city, and meets an artist who begins to steal his heart. But what starts out as a mission to bring attention to the fledgling aviation company soon turns perilous, threatening the safety of Oliver and his companions.
Leona's Review:
I received a complimentary copy of Flying Conquistadors from the author, Michael Scott Bertrand.
In the beginning of the book: "To the reader: This is a work of fiction. Several characters in this work of fiction are based on real people. I have put words into the mouths of these characters that the real people did not say."  The reader should remember this as they read the book.
Michael Scott Bertrand takes the reader on quite an adventure.
The adventure takes us on Pam Am Airlines and to the ruins of Mexico. It starts with the beginning of Pan Am as a mail plane and then accepts passengers. Oliver Wheelock begins as an all around helper. The owner, Mr. Priester is Dutch. The author made him a special character and I really like him and how he spoke. Charles Lindbergh is the hero of Oliver and later the reader will find Ernest Hemingway as part of the book.  I also like Oliver's mother. I think she said what most mother say when worried about their child. She was from South Carolina so you will see the "Bless Your Heart" saying.
I have studied the Maya and their culture and this book takes the reader to the ruins. The author has certainly been to the ruins. He also has a lot of knowledge about airplanes.
The Carnegie Foundation is involved in archaeology at the ruins. They had a facility in Key West, Florida.
The character of Charles Lindbergh drinks a lot of Coca-cola, I could not find that information anywhere on the Internet but I will take the word of the writer. He is a quiet man who does not care for all the attention.
Most of the ruins I knew but the author lost me about page 350 when I thought they were at the ruins at El Tajin in Veracruz. When I re-read the book, I will probably figure out which ruins.
I found the description on the planes were interesting. Main rule was safety, safety, safety. Plane references were leather jacket, goggles, retractable wheels, fuel amount left, clipper and Pan American Airway Systems.
Many references to the ruins of Mexico and Central America are cenote (sinkhole), Chichen Itza, Tikal, Merida, sacbe (sacred road), stelae, thatched roofs, Mayan, Moctecuhzoma, ball court, pyramid, Solstice, hard to climb steps because so steep, Yucatan, paintings on walls, Tulum and more.
Frederick Catherwood is mentioned in the book. Catherwood and John Lloyd Stephen were in the Yucatan of Mexico together. Catherwood was an artist and his drawings  are in the book. Read the book, Incidents of Travel in the Yucatan for more information. I have it and found it very interesting.
The reader will find the name of Montezuma spelled Motecuhzoma which is Nahuatl, language of the Aztec. The author also spells it Moctezuma.
 I will still give it a 5 star rating.
Find Michael Scott Bertrand at
Leona Olson

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