Rebecca Steele Chasing a Dream ISBN: not listed, JBelle Publishers an e-book by Joanne Patterson.
Becky is a once unhappily married airline employee who with another is caught up in traffic caused by a widely popular air show being in town. Thus they witness the performance and through a quirk of fate, she meets engagingly handsome Johnny, one of the organization’s mechanics who travels with the group. She is overwhelmed by his approach and her strong feelings of physical attraction and they succeed in having a wonderful time together. When they part he asks if she can meet him at the next stop. She does and thereafter finds herself with enough seniority in her position that she can reorganizing her schedule to meet him wherever his succeeding assignments take him. The resulting relationship is a never-ending round of fun and games that appears literally to generate love on both sides. Granted, an excessive amount of physical attraction is evident but seemingly it is accompanied by, or based upon strong, more deeply held feelings of attraction. Coincidentally, because all of the air group exhibit strong male bonding and there is a ‘looseness’ to their way of living as well as other relationships, even the most intimate moments often are not consummated in the privacy one usually associates with indulging in such activities. The relationship continues at a quite torrid pace with the many uncertainties generated by such a chaotic arrangement until an unexpected twist develops that interferes with her once-in-a-lifetime romance. The heart wrenching experience forces her to re-evaluate her life, review her needs and desires and from here devise new hope, a new career and with still another twist a new life of even greater proportions.
Discussion: The author has provided an interesting love story of another era that includes extensive sexual activity without overt erotica, joy, loss, ability of the human spirit to rebound and the strong emotional appeal provided by music, especially by the sentimental songs of the 1970’s. All of these factors should have strong appeal for a certain type of reader. Unfortunately, the strong attachment of the plot to songs of this particular timeframe do present a possible problem for some readers. In the 1970’s routine reference to women ‘groupies’ joining members of the travelling pilots/mechanics for a night or few days as ‘hammers’, ‘hole cards’ and similar with the obvious connotations was totally accepted. As such, and although it was as demeaning then as it is now, today’s mores with respect to sexual equality may quite clearly indicate the references to be as distasteful as they are and therefore members of later generations may encounter difficulty in tolerating a large element of the story. One additional note for any pragmatists – The book is sub-titled: A Look Behind the Scenes at the United States Silver Eagles “… is based on a true story”. The popularity of Air Shows had seriously begun to wain by the ‘70’s and the cost of maintaining a travelling show with 10 jets and supportive personnel by other than the government would have been exceedingly high and as any male/female veteran will notice, there is no evidence of any type of true military control or activity. Regrettably this unfortunate ‘hole’ in the story’s basics leaves an ‘uneasiness’ for anyone who likes to have a firm footing even in his/her fiction.
3* 4* unusual romance for less discerning; caveat for regrettable hiccups.