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Cover image for Basher five-two : the true story of F-16 fighter pilot Captain Scott O'Grady
Basher five-two : the true story of F-16 fighter pilot Captain Scott O'Grady
Other title(s):
Basher 5-2

Publication Information:
New York : Doubleday, 1997.
Physical Description:
133 pages : illustrations, map ; 22 cm
The true story of F-16 fighter pilot Scott O'Grady on a mission over Bosnia who was shot down and survived in enemy territory until his daring rescue.
Program Information:
Accelerated Reader Grades 5-8 7 5 Quiz 25883 English non-fiction, vocabulary quiz available.
Conference Subject:
Added Author:


Call Number
+ 949.703 OG7
949.703 O'GRADY

On Order



This is the amazing, true survival tale of an American Air Force pilot who was shot down during a peacekeeping mission over Bosnia. "Basher Five-Two" includes a photo insert with pictures of the captain as a child, as well as of his plane.

Reviews 3

School Library Journal Review

Gr 5 Up‘On June 2, 1995, while 29-year-old Air Force Captain Scott O'Grady flew his 47th mission over Bosnia, his F-16 fighter plane was downed by a Serbian land missile. O'Grady relates the events of his six-day, harrowing adventure after parachuting from his disabled plane. Left with minimal supplies and a radio low on battery life, Basher Five-Two (O'Grady's "call sign" for the mission) avoided enemy detection, protected himself from the elements, and subsisted on a diet of leaves, ants, and rainwater. The author effectively communicates not just the details of his miraculous survival, but also how he relied on his love of family and religious faith in dealing with his fear and despair. To create suspense, the narrative is interrupted at the point that the plane is shot down with a chapter that gives details of the soldier's childhood and military training. This break in narrative flow, however, makes it more difficult for younger readers to stay with this inspirational story. Black-and-white photos appear in a 16-page center insert. The memoir ends with a satisfying account of O'Grady's rescue and subsequent treatment as a national hero, even though he claims, "I wasn't really a hero...I was a survivor."‘Jack Forman, Mesa College Library, San Diego (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Horn Book Review

(Preschool) Cousins's much-loved mouse Maisy appears in her usual bright, bold colors in a simple and effective counting book. The generous-sized pic-tures on white backgrounds will help children find the objects to be counted: one ladybug on the end of Maisy's nose, two flowers in front of Maisy's house, three buckles on her pirate costume....Ten fleas on an elephant pal end the count, and a final spread shows simple rows of flowers in groups of one to ten, with numbers in both numeral and word form. This eye-catching, oversized board book is simultaneously published with the less successful Maisy's Colors, whose concept is regrettably muddied, as the featured color is sometimes difficult to di (c) Copyright 2010. The Horn Book, Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

Booklist Review

Gr. 6-10. "The Great American Celebrity Machine wanted to make me a hero. As I'd tried to explain to so many people, I wasn't really a hero, I was a survivor." O'Grady, who miraculously survived six days in enemy territory after his F-16 was shot down, returned to find a nation fascinated with his adventure. In minute detail, O'Grady, with help from French, tells his amazing story, from his parachute drop and endeavors to evade hostile Bosnian Serbs to sustaining himself by eating ants and drinking water from rain-soaked socks. Although it must have been tempting to sensationalize the fascinating events, this title is a model of restraint, and with relevant aspects of O'Grady's childhood and military training interspersed throughout the book, readers get a clear sense of O'Grady's strength of character and will to survive. A great hook for reluctant readers. (Reviewed July 1997)038532300XLauren Peterson