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24 of 25 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The most exciting and inspiring book I have ever read.
I have read and re-read "Fate is the Hunter" so many times that the pages are loose and falling out. You are not just reading the best aviation book of all time, you are in the cockpit behind the master himself, as he savors the illicit thrill of a zero-zero takeoff from a fog bound Presque Isle airport in a C-47 during the war, taking a load of steel girders to Goose...
Published on 13 July 1998

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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Good, but sometimes difficult to read.
This account of one man's flying career, from barnstorming to international multi-engine flights, gives one an idea of the circumstances for would-be non military pilots in the 1930's. It follows his career from novice through mail-flight pilot to his work for Air Transport Command and ends with his work for Trans-Oceanic Although this airline is not mentioned by...
Published 22 months ago by A. W. Collins


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24 of 25 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The most exciting and inspiring book I have ever read., 13 July 1998
By A Customer
This review is from: Fate is the Hunter (Paperback)
I have read and re-read "Fate is the Hunter" so many times that the pages are loose and falling out. You are not just reading the best aviation book of all time, you are in the cockpit behind the master himself, as he savors the illicit thrill of a zero-zero takeoff from a fog bound Presque Isle airport in a C-47 during the war, taking a load of steel girders to Goose Bay. Just after takeoff, the girders break loose and slide to the rear of the aircraft, which starts a climb so steep that the plane is shuddering in a stall. As Gann and his co-pilot are pushing the control column forward as hard as they can with their feet a crewmember is trying to move the girders back up the near vertical floor.
Gann's writing so inspired me that I wanted to become an airline pilot, but my flying ability was just slightly better than Bixby, his inept co-pilot that almost collided with the Taj Mahal, another fascinating story later on in the book. I became a dispatcher instead, an occupation I truly loved, which was also inspired by Gann's interaction with the dispatchers of his line.
I wrote Ernest Gann at his home in Friday Harbor, Washington and tried to convey just how much I enjoyed "Fate is the Hunter" and what an impact it made on my life. I received short note from him. It was very gracious and humble, and is one of my greatest treasures.
I also highly recommend "Hostage to Fortune", a chronology of Gann's incredible life from a rebellious young man that could never follow his father into business and be chained to an office, through a lifetime of adventure, to his retirement on Red Mill Farm, on an island in the Pacific northwest.
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46 of 48 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars AN UNFORGETTABLE MASTERPIECE, 18 Nov 2000
By A Customer
This review is from: Fate is the Hunter (Paperback)
About a hundred years ago I walked into a bookshop in a small English town and found a hardback copy of "Fate". It was gathering dust on a high shelf - something that had been ordered and never collected the lady bookseller said. That was at the beginning of my flying career. I tried, and nearly succeeded in tracing EKG's footsteps around the globe. True the equipment was a bit more modern and we had inertial nav over astro nav, even so it was all very memorable - especially when I got to make a pencilled notation on the page of that book indicating the date I'd been there. The career has ended now, and I more or less resemble that battered hardback copy that resided at the bottom of my flight bag for nearly 17,000 flight hours. So, thanks for a story of flight and flying men that will never be beaten, EKG. My privilege to have shared the same sky. Any co-pilot slots available at our equivalent of "Fiddlers Green", I'll be along shortly.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The measure of a man..., 14 May 1999
By A Customer
This review is from: Fate is the Hunter (Paperback)
Everyone here has given this book five stars and I am no exception. Pilots know that flying is not just transportation but a way of learning who you really are, the stuff you are made of. This book is clearly Gann's masterwork. After reading the chapter on thunderstorms, I thought that there was just no better aviation writing and I still had half the book to go. Of course, then came the chapter on flying in ice. This alone is worth the price of the book and is probably the best aviation story every told. My hair stood on end for days... A great blend of flying, adventure and good writing.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Captures the True Spirit of flying for the airlines, 24 Jun 1999
By A Customer
This review is from: Fate is the Hunter (Paperback)
This book truly captures the emotions of a pilot and what it was like to fly for the flegling airline industry 60 years ago. Mr. Gann also chronicals the start of M.A.T.S. (military air transport service) of WW II. Even though it was written in the time frame of the 30's and 40's it all holds true in todays flying. A must read for any pilot interested in the history of the industry
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The best aviation book ever written, 10 Feb 1998
By A Customer
This review is from: Fate is the Hunter (Paperback)
The first book I ever read that puts you in the cockpit, sweating to cross the Blue ridge Mountains, or to clear the Taj Mahal. Over 50 years later, the essence of airline flight has not changed, and Gann understood why pilots will aways be at "The tip of the Arrow" My mothergave me this book when I was 14, and it led to a career as an airline pilot with a major
carrier...I have an original 1961 edition of this
book, one of my most prized positions, and I re-read it from time to time; as a great literary
work, and as a bedrock of what it means to
live and work in the sky...because of men like him, a generation of pilots found their calling.
Not just an aviation book, it addresses the ran-
domness of fate in all walks of life. Very highly
recommended!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Gann puts you in the cockpit!!! And gets you thinking ., 7 May 1999
By A Customer
This review is from: Fate is the Hunter (Paperback)
The finest aviation memior ever written. A biography that reads like a novel. Read the chapters about flying in ice and thunderstorms and you'll be back with Gann in the cockpits of DC-2s and 3s. But yet it's not an "airplane" book, it's a reflction on life's paths. A must read for anyone who loves flying or has ever wondered about our destiny. He wonders about fate without getting into metaphysics...Gann doesn't come across as a philospher, rather as a man asking the questions we all ask ourselves (but rarely admit to). I still have the first copy I bought nearly 30 years ago, and my autographed copy is one of my prized possessions. Once you read it, you'll find yourself reading it every couple of years!
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11 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A must read for aviation enthusiasts, 21 Feb 1999
By A Customer
This review is from: Fate is the Hunter (Paperback)
The book chronicles Gann's career as a "high timer," an airline pilot with more than 10,000 hours in his log book. If you are a fan of the propeller era of air transport, (DC-2/DC-3/DC-4) you will find his accounts of life on the flight deck fascinating. Additionally, private pilots may learn useful tips for flying in foul weather.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Good, but sometimes difficult to read., 19 Sep 2012
By 
A. W. Collins (Midlands UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Fate is the Hunter (Paperback)
This account of one man's flying career, from barnstorming to international multi-engine flights, gives one an idea of the circumstances for would-be non military pilots in the 1930's. It follows his career from novice through mail-flight pilot to his work for Air Transport Command and ends with his work for Trans-Oceanic Although this airline is not mentioned by name.

There is a exhaustive and engaging account of the attempts to locate, supply and ultimately rescue a colleague who has crash landed on an ice-floe between Canada and Greenland.

Mr Ganns writing tends towards the florid and overly precise which means the reader is obliged to concentrate fully if he is to get the full meaning of the phrasing. Sometimes this will necessitate reading the section again in order to fully understand what the author is trying to communicate. He effects to have used real names in the book, (surname only) except where using such would cause offence. However he sometimes goes out of his way to avoid mentioning the names of companies. One is known enigmatically throughout as the "The Steamship Airline", which according to his memiors was actually very good.

The dangerous nature of the enterprise is illustrated by the hundreds of names of aviators who now as he puts it, have their wings "forever folded".
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fate is the Hunter, 23 Feb 2009
By 
R. Weks - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Fate is the Hunter (Paperback)
After many years out of print this has to be the definitive "pilots own" story of the development of civil aviation in the early twin engine days of the thirties+ little known anecdotes on the development of MATS during the Second World War where many civilian pilots were co-oped into the US Military Air Transport Service , where around the world flights and three breakfasts on the trot due to time zone travels were not uncommon. This is a real life " I learn 't flying from that.." book.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Magnificent, 31 Jan 1999
By A Customer
This review is from: Fate is the Hunter (Paperback)
Without a doubt, the best book I have ever read about 30's, 40's flying. Excellent. I read this one in 1961 when it first was published. I can still remember most of the incidents Gann describes. They live in my memory. The "Match" incident in a storm flying a DC-3 on an Eastern route, the time he lifted a C-87 at the last moment on takeoff by extending full flaps to avoid hitting the Taj Mahal.. An epict book. Try it, it will be hard to put down. B.G.Schlueter
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Fate is the Hunter
Fate is the Hunter by Ernest K. Gann (Paperback - 15 Sep 2011)
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