Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Hard Landing: The Epic Contest for Power and Profits That Plunged the Airlines into Chaos” as Want to Read:
Hard Landing: The Epic Contest for Power and Profits That Plunged the Airlines into Chaos
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating

Hard Landing: The Epic Contest for Power and Profits That Plunged the Airlines into Chaos

4.31 of 5 stars 4.31  ·  rating details  ·  143 ratings  ·  19 reviews
In this updated paperback edition of a "rich, readable, and authoritative" Fortune) book, Wall Street Journal reporter Petzinger tells the dramatic story of how a dozen men, including Robert Crandall of American Airlines, Frank Borman of Eastern, and Richard Ferris of United, battled for control of the world's airlines. 416 pp. Radio drive-time pubilcity. 20,000 print.


From
...more
ebook, 624 pages
Published December 1st 2010 by Three Rivers Press (first published January 1st 1995)
more details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Hard Landing, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Hard Landing

This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 279)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  rating details
Hella Comat
Very (too much for me) detailed account of deregulation of the airlines in the US. The story of the CEOs and presidents who ran the airlines and the anecdotes about their lives and personalities interested me more, as well as the creativity and ruthlessness it took to evolve the industry and keep trying to make a profit.
Brian
Hard Landing by Thomas Petzinger is one of the most comprehensive overviews of the airline industry and its subsets. This book not only covers the major players and looks at the personal lives of the titans who built the industry but also the rise and fall of companies such as Pan Am, Eastern and TWA. It focuses mostly on United and American but also looks at groups like Southwest, Frontier and Barniff. From the struggles of deregulation to the price wars of the 1980's this is one of the most co ...more
Steve
There are relatively few books on the recent history of the airline industry. This is odd considering how key the industry is, on the other hand, I haven't seen a history of Greyhound Bus Lines for sale recently either.

This book contains a great amount of fascinating detail, but it could have used a great deal of editorial assistance. Not for the writing itself, but for the organization. The history is presented in a maddeningly scatter-shot way, with great gaps in continuity. I would like very
...more
Brian
Hard Landing is a wonderfully written and well researched book about the chaos of the post deregulation era of the airline industry. The book reads less like a history book and more like a fiction novel, but truth (in this case) is much stranger than fiction. If you would like to know more about the airlines, and the travel industry as well, Hard Landing covers everything from the uniqueness of business practices in an oligopolistic industry to the reason why you pay so much for everything if yo ...more
Wayne
This long read (416 pages) contains a very detailed explanation of the challenges involved in managing a major airline. In the years following deregulation of the industry, CEOs faced an extremely challenging environment to stay afloat. IN an often cuthroat marketplace they were forced to pare back costs in all ways imagineable. I was previously unaware of the importance of online fare structues and the involvement of travel agencies to attract customers.
Ms.P
I learned so much about the airline industry. I wouldn't recommend this to everyone, but for someone like me, who has an interest in aviation and airlines, it was a wonderful read. Actually, I think anyone who has an interest in business and larger than life evil CEO characters might enjoy this. It appears to be very well sourced, if a bit out of date. (It was last updated in the late 90s).
Jerry Smith
In depth review of the de-regulation of the aviation industry in the US in the 80s and 90s that resulted in the demise of Eastern, Pan Am and others and saw the rise of American, Southwest etc.

Told in terms of the companies themsleves but more specifically the CEOs who took them through deregulation. Fascinating.
Amanda
Very interesting look at the airline industry from the end of regulation and the beginning of deregulation. Moral of the story: the airline industry has been messed up from the very beginning and that labor and contract issues have been running this industry from the very beginning.
Andy
An absolute must for anyone interested in aviation. As a professional pilot, I found it fascinating to look back into the lives of the "robber barons" that created the airline industry. Tons of humor, insight, and research organized in a very readable manner.
Vera
Sep 15, 2007 Vera rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: anyone in the aviation industry
Amazing research and material used to uncover the aviation industry at its best - and worst. Judging from the numberous direct quotes the author had in the book, I must conclude that he was literally a fly on the wall in many a meeting room.
Patrick
Great book with history of the airline industry. Good mix of pro-labor and anti-labor. As a child who grem up in the eighties, it was interesting to revisit what happened to all those companies.
Eric
Fascinating. What a ride. The airline industry is truly the most fascinating industry in the world. And its leaders are such dynamic, interesting, and in some cases, horrible men.
Tara
A great book about the major players in the building of the airline industry. The author did extensive research and is clearly passionate about the topic.
Comaskeyk001
Nov 08, 2008 Comaskeyk001 rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: airline workers
Deregulation and the airline industry...esp good read now that the "free market" excesses have run their inevitable course
Matt
A solid history of the growing pains experienced by the major US carriers for a generation following deregulation.
Scott
so fascinating, even though dated... incredible history lesson and as usual- it comes down to people.
Elliot
A surprisingly compelling and drama-filled look at the business of the airline business.
Christopher
An engrossing look into the dynamic history of the airline industry.
Andrew
Andrew marked it as to-read
Oct 12, 2014
Tim Dugan
Tim Dugan is currently reading it
Sep 22, 2014
Barry
Barry is currently reading it
Sep 12, 2014
Robert Karl
Robert Karl is currently reading it
Sep 08, 2014
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • Reach for the Skies: Ballooning, Birdmen And Blast synopsis
  • Crash Course: The American Automobile Industry's Road from Glory to Disaster
  • 747: Creating the World's First Jumbo Jet and Other Adventures from a Life in Aviation
  • China Airborne
  • Fate is the Hunter
  • Punching Out: One Year in a Closing Auto Plant
  • Animal Factory: The Looming Threat of Industrial Pig, Dairy, and Poultry Farms to Humans and the Environment
  • Everything but the Coffee: Learning about America from Starbucks
  • Bombs Away
  • Wingnuts: How the Lunatic Fringe is Hijacking America
  • Appetite for Self-Destruction: The Spectacular Crash of the Record Industry in the Digital Age
  • Samurai!
  • Car Guys vs. Bean Counters: The Battle for the Soul of American Business
  • Boeing Versus Airbus: The Inside Story of the Greatest International Competition in Business
  • American Patriot: The Life and Wars of Colonel Bud Day
  • Most Secret War
  • Admiral Hornblower: Comprising Flying Colours, The Commodore, Lord Hornblower, Hornblower in the West Indies (Hornblower Saga: Chronological Order #8-11 omnibus)
  • Divided Highways: Building the Interstate Highways, Transforming American Life
Oil and Honor The New Pioneers: The Men And Women Who Are Transforming The Workplace And The Marketplace

Share This Book

“Part of the Growth Plan's genius lay in how diabolical it was. The one controlling obstacle to the plan, of course, were the unions at American [Airlines in the early 1980s]. The very concept of a two-tier wage system ran 180 degrees counter to the fundamental all-for-one, one-for-all principles of unionism. But the Growth Plan was conspicuously structured to benefit _existing_ union members, who in an expanding airline would enjoy vastly greater promotion opportunities, meaning that their salaries would increase even more than otherwise. The incumbent employees would reap this windfall on the backs of future employees, but what did it matter when the winners under this strategy were the only ones able to vote on the proposal?” 0 likes
More quotes…