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Publisher's Summary

Velva Jean Hart, the fiercely independent heroine of Jennifer Niven's spectacular debut novel, Velva Jean Learns to Drive, returns in a captivating adventure that literally sends her soaring. Bristling at the limitations faced by a woman in rural Appalachia and fueled by the memory of her late Mama telling her to "live out there," Velva Jean hits the road to pursue her dream of singing at the Grand Ole Opry. But after a string of auditions, she begins to lose hope - until her brother pays her a surprise visit and treats Velva Jean to a flying lesson that ignites a brand-new dream: to become a female pilot. Funny, poignant, and utterly unforgettable, Velva Jean Learns to Fly will have fans cheering all over again.
©2011 Jennifer Niven (P)2011 Tantor
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Critic Reviews

"Besides creating a gutsy heroine, who, despite the repressive times, never becomes bitter, Niven's writing shines overall. Cheers to Niven, Velva Jean." (Booklist)
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful
3 out of 5 stars
By Naomi on 08-28-12

Why change the reader?

Is there anything you would change about this book?

I liked the way Jenna Lemia read the first book in the series, and I felt like I was now a part of Velva Jean's family, rooting for her so much that I wanted to hear her next adventure, but this the new reader (Emily Durante) was so different, I was very disappointed. I felt as if my baby was switched at the hospital. The book is so well written, but the new reader obviously hadn't read the first book and didn't know the story line, so her interpretation was flat. Bummer.Regarding the story, I loved it, but I felt at one point, there was a forced event - when Gossy ended up on the same plane Velva Jean was piloting into history. The story didn't need it and I didn't buy it for a second that Gossy would put up with the military and vice versa. Also, the way it ended makes me feel that there's so many loose ends, there's gotta be another book soon.

What was one of the most memorable moments of Velva Jean Learns to Fly?

I love the way Jennifer Niven weaves a tale. I also like the way she's paints the landscape of discrimination, prejudice and how women were (are) treated. Good for Velva Jean!

Who would you have cast as narrator instead of Emily Durante?

Jenna Lamia.

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4 of 5 people found this review helpful

4 out of 5 stars
By Betsy on 11-14-14

I wish Jenna Lamia had narrated the entire series.

What did you like about this audiobook?

Great story and characters

How has the book increased your interest in the subject matter?


Does the author present information in a way that is interesting and insightful, and if so, how does he achieve this?

Lots of detail on my hometown, Nashville. Love the characters!

What did you find wrong about the narrator's performance?

Not a bad narrator, but Jenna Lamia was better.

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1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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