• Fly Girl

  • A Memoir
  • By: Ann Hood
  • Narrated by: Ann Hood
  • Length: 8 hrs and 11 mins
  • 4.5 out of 5 stars (473 ratings)

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Fly Girl  By  cover art

Fly Girl

By: Ann Hood
Narrated by: Ann Hood
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Publisher's Summary

An entertaining and fascinating memoir of “gifted storyteller” (People) Ann Hood’s adventurous years as a TWA flight attendant.

In 1978, in the tailwind of the golden age of air travel, flight attendants were the epitome of glamor and sophistication. Fresh out of college and hungry to experience the world―and maybe, one day, write about it―Ann Hood joined their ranks. After a grueling job search, Hood survived TWA’s rigorous Breech Training Academy and learned to evacuate seven kinds of aircraft, deliver a baby, mix proper cocktails, administer oxygen, and stay calm no matter what the situation.

In the air, Hood found both the adventure she’d dreamt of and the unexpected realities of life on the job. She carved chateaubriand in the first-class cabin and dined in front of the pyramids in Cairo, fended off passengers’ advances and found romance on layovers in London and Lisbon, and walked more than a million miles in high heels. She flew through the start of deregulation, an oil crisis, massive furloughs, and a labor strike.

As the airline industry changed around her, Hood began to write―even drafting snatches of her first novel from the jump-seat. She reveals how the job empowered her, despite its roots in sexist standards. Packed with funny, moving, and shocking stories of life as a flight attendant, Fly Girl captures the nostalgia and magic of air travel at its height, and the thrill that remains with every takeoff.

©2022 Ann Hood (P)2022 Recorded Books

What listeners say about Fly Girl

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
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  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

We’ll written, not what I expected

I expected more of a comedy with entertaining stories of passengers and flight mishaps. There was some of this but more history of airlines and changes over the years in expectations of flight attendants. All of that was interesting, just less of the light entertainment I was looking for.

30 people found this helpful

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The beginnings of women as stewardesses

Ann Hood tells a fascinating story of dreaming about and finally becoming an airline hostess. It's even more personal because it's her own story as well.
As a child watching the contrails of planes overhead, she promised herself that one day she'd be on one and fly all over the world. It took determination and guts and hard study to get there.
As the first cabin attendants were all men, there was a push against the male solidarity and then came the idea that women on board should be sex kittens. It's why the height, weight and beauty (hair, skin, legs) qualifications were so strict.
Ann didn't care. She made herself into what they wanted and applied many times - her goal to fly TWA (Trans World Airlines) so she could travel to exotic places like Paris, London and Rome. Finally she was accepted, but as the newbie, flying the least desirable routes and doing the hardest job in flight.
She was so proud of her uniform with the wings and her goal achieved, she didn't care, but worked harder.
Besides her personal story there is also the history of passenger aviation and how it grew in numbers and luxury. Chateaubriand in first class, carved right at your seat!! Wines in glass flutes. Warm freshly baked cookies and brownies served throughout the plane!
And then she watched the decline in service to a bag of peanuts and coffee in paper cups with powdered cream. (Deregulation.)
She tells the stories beautifully (both her own and TWA's). I grew up wanting to be a stewardess as well, but didn't have her push. Now I fly the world in budget seats and paying for it.
A truly interesting read, and it's read so well by the author.

25 people found this helpful

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From one ex-flight attendant to another…..

Thank you for helping me to relive such great memories ♥️

Piedmont Airlines 1989-1999
American Airlines 1999-2004

22 people found this helpful

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An Empowering Book

I loved Ann’s book! As a woman who started her Fly Girl career at 54 years old after years of dreaming of flying & then thinking it would never happen, but then it did! There were so many similar feelings of wonder & love of this career/lifestyle. Her book made me smile, laugh out loud, brought me to tears when there was a similar experience & literally gave me goosebumps throughout. If you’ve ever been flight attendant, still are or dreamed of living your life at 35,000 feet, read Fly Girl, I don’t think you’ll be disappointed. This book can empower the young flight attendant wannabe or remind those of us who fly how brave we are for becoming.

16 people found this helpful

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Flight Crew 101

Ann's memoir is too relatable with only 8 years flying under my belt. Her recollections of reserve life, passenger interactions and layover highlights remain unchanged though the airlines have morphed into bigger and better forces for uniting the world. I enjoyed listening to every minute, thinking about my own journey in the skies and exploring foreign cities, my own gaffes and faux pas. Having been no stranger to furlough myself, I can definitely say that once it's in your blood, there's no going back. You will always long for the sky, the clouds and ironically, the touch of rubber to the runway. Well done, Ann. Thank you for the encouragement, from one small town girl to the next! Look how far we've come! I would recommend this book to any looking for some personal insight into the world of flight attendants peppered with some historical information surrounding TWA and their moment in the spotlight as one of aviation's finest prior to deregulation.

14 people found this helpful

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A great story from a great writer

As a lifelong aviation fan, I loved Ann’s book. I’ve been an airline pilot, an air ambulance pilot, a private VVIP pilot, and the owner of a private charter company. Thoroughly loved Ann’s story and her clear love of aviation.

9 people found this helpful

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Great memoir of a bygone era

Loved this book. Engaging, fun, poignant. Great narration by the author. Wonderful behind the scenes stories. It's a tale about a young woman who dreams of exploring the world and finds so much more. Well crafted and delightful.

8 people found this helpful

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Much more than I expected

I expected some fun and possibly scandalous stories but this book delivers so much more. This is an interesting true story of adventure, bravery, corporations, Americana, ambition, sexism and world travel. Ann Hood somehow makes all of that flow effortlessly on to the page.

7 people found this helpful

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So very Fun!

As a former TWA flight attendant the book brought back so many great memories of a wonderful time in my life! It is very well written and very real. Thanks Ann for sharing this exciting time of flying.

5 people found this helpful

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Nostalgic and poignant

Ann Hood is now one of my favorite writers, one among those few able to evoke in me a nostalgia for a life I never lived. Her words make me see her sights, taste her foods and feel her emotions. I know all good tales come to an end, but I truly wanted hers to go on for another few chapters or at least another few flights. Thank you, Ms. Hood, for sharing your life in your own voice.

4 people found this helpful