Books: The Once Favored Son

Flying solo across the Atlantic made Charles Lindbergh a hero. The turbulence hit soon after

Lloyd's of London refused to offer odds; the trip was too dangerous. Then ships in the Atlantic radioed sightings, and after 28 hours of flight, the Spirit of St. Louis crossed Dingle Bay on the southwest coast of Ireland; Lloyd's finally quoted 10-3 against Charles Lindbergh's making Paris. Six hours more, and he touched down at Le Bourget. A crowd of 150,000 engulfed the little plane like a tidal wave.

By May 1927, as A. Scott Berg writes in his superb biography, Lindbergh (G.P. Putnam's Sons; 640 pages; $30), "radio, telephones, radiographs and the Bartlane Cable Process could transmit images and...

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