Clear to Lift by Anne Wilson can best be described as an action novel with a side of romance. From the first page to the last we are swept into the world of search and rescue in the mountains of Nevada. Alison Malone, recently stationed at Naval Air Station Fallon, feels that her career in the Navy has stagnated. Desperate to get her career back on track, she resolutely pushes for a transfer away from a duty station she considers to be a step in the wrong direction. But as she learns new skills and builds relationships within both the military and civilian communities, her resolve wavers. And her desire to be stationed near her corporate-investor fiancé in San Diego begins to crumble.
Clear to Lift follows in the footsteps of Wilson’s first novel, Hover, in that both feature a strong female protagonist making her way in the military. It’s clear that Wilson writes what she knows. Her time as a Navy helicopter pilot shines through in the action sequences and the plot details. Her writing is engaging and complex. The characters, especially those in the military, have a ring of truth.
Wilson’s bio will tell you that she graduated from the United States Naval Academy and served for nine years as a helicopter pilot. After that she worked in the semiconductor industry before owning a triathlon coaching company with her husband. Although her career to date has focused on outdoor ventures and high-altitude rescue specialties, I believe that Wilson is first and foremost a writer. Rather than thinking of her as an adventurous pilot who enjoys writing, I think of her as a writer who happens to have amassed an amazing skill set, one that allows her to share with her readers a world that most people only dream of.
Review by Betsy Beard, MWSA Reviewer
Navy helicopter pilot Lt. Alison Malone has been assigned to a search and rescue team based at Naval Air Station Fallon, Nevada, near the rugged peaks of the Sierra Nevada, and far from her former elite H-60 squadron. A rule follower by nature, Alison is exasperated and outraged every time she flies with her mission commander, "Boomer" Marks, for whom military procedures are merely a suggestion. Alison is desperate to be transferred out of the boonies, where careers stagnate, and back to her life and fiancé in San Diego.
Alison's defenses start to slip when she meets mountain guide Will Cavanaugh during a particularly dicey mission. Will introduces her to a wild, beautiful world of adventure that she has never known before. Stranded on a mountain during a sudden dangerous blizzard, Alison questions every truth she thought she knew about herself. When Will braves the storm to save her life, she must confront the fact that she has been living a lie. But is it too late to change course?
Full of action and adventure, dangerous and heart-stopping rescues, blizzards and floods, family secrets and second chances, Clear to Lift by Anne A. Wilson is a thrilling woman's journey as she finds confidence, truth, love, and herself against the majestic backdrop of the Sierra Nevada.
Book Format(s): Hard cover
Genre(s): Fiction, Literary Fiction
Number of Pages: 320