Book Jacket


rank 5917
word count 13299
date submitted 28.03.2009
date updated 28.03.2009
genres: History, Biography, Travel
classification: universal

Lady Icarus - The Life of Irish Aviator Lady Mary Heath

Lindie Naughton

Pioneering Irish pilot and adventurer Lady Mary Heath came from unpromising beginnings - when she was an infant, her father murdered her mother.


For a five-year period from the mid 1920s, the Limerick-born pilot Lady Mary Heath was one of the best-known women in the world. It was an era when everyone had gone aviation mad, due to the exploits of Charles Lindberg and, later, Amelia Earhart. ‘Britain’s Lady Lindy’, as Lady Mary Heath was known, made front-page news worldwide as the first pilot ever, male or female, to fly a small open-cockpit plane solo from Capetown to London.
Never one to sit still for long, Lady Mary had already spent two years as a dispatch rider during the First World War, pioneered women’s athletics in Britain and helped introduce women’s track and field to the Olympics. Along the way, she was to travel widely and marry three times, eventually returning with her third husband, a Trinidadian, to establish her own air company in north Dublin.
Most remarkably, the woman born Sophie Peirce Evans at Knockaderry, Co. Limerick achieved all this despite the most unpromising of beginnings – when she was just a toddler, her crazed father had murdered her mother and was put away for life after a sensational trial.

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1920s, adventure, aviation, aviatrix, biography, earhart, flight, flying, irish, murder, pilots, sport, women

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annaskitchenfr wrote 1534 days ago

I was fascinated to read these chapters and feel sure Lady Mary must have come across Beryl Markham. My grandmother went out to British East Africa in 1904 to become Beryl Clutterbuck's governess. Your descriptions of life in those days fits in with stories I have of my grandmother getting into trouble with Sir Charles Clutterbuck and my grandfather marrying her to give the child (my uncle) a name. All this is mentioned in my book "Born on Friday 13th".
Excellent writing and I am backing this.

Neacht wrote 1733 days ago

Thank you Janvier - much appreciated. It took ovr five years of hard labour!

JANVIER wrote 1734 days ago

Hello Lindie,

You wrote a deep and moving story here with details that are plentiful. The story flows smoothly and the right choice of words, well-crafted lines made it a compelling read. Overall, this is a well written story.

All the best.

Janvier (Flash of the Sun)

NoraD wrote 1741 days ago

Obviously well researched, this is also extremely well written, and give a fascinating view of a nearly-forgotten era. Especially in the first chapter, you make great use of telling detail. Unfortunatly, the missing chapters make it impossible to get properly into the story - please post some more, or get it published!

Djedra wrote 1785 days ago

I am really impressed.
I began reading this without a great deal of enthusiasm, given that the subject matter doesn't really interest me, but I must admit that your writing immediately brought it to life and I was compelled to read on. This makes fr some really vivid and facinating reading. I think you must have a real passion for your subject because you write about her with such ease, which means that the reader does not feel as if they are having information thrust upon them, but, rather, are a part of the story at hand.
I thought the first chapter was brilliant. I hope you keep up the pace and the exuberance throughout the rest of the book. It is hard to judge given that there are only the four chapters here, but I really wish you well on this.

mumu wrote 1850 days ago

This is really wonderful--I love flight and history and murder! You have it all.

I am excited to shelf this for you.

I would very much love you to review mine and should you like it, I would appreciate a vote.