It’s likely there have been enough books on the Wright brothers to fill up every inch of a small, or maybe even a medium size, library, but in The Wright Brothers, his new biography of the pioneers of flight, award-winning historian David McCullough adds another very worthy and very accessible volume on Wilbur and Orville.
The book focuses more on the Wright brothers’ accomplishments than on any juicy tidbits about their personal lives. While Orville and Wilbur do mention a few times the “handsome” women that surround them once they become celebrities, nothing seems to have gone beyond that. In addition, neither brother seems to have shown an interest in socializing with royalty nor the rich and famous beyond what was necessary for promoting their business interests. That’s not to say they were boring. While humble in regards to his achievements, Wilbur did show a bit of flash by flying up the Hudson River and on another flight circling the Statue of Liberty. The Wright Brothers illuminates the paradox of the brothers being hard working and practical while also trying something that most people at the time thought to be pure madness.