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    Shooting Script by Gavin Lyall

    My favourite read by the late Gavin Lyall, a pilot who can write an aviation novel with feeling. The story includes a D.H. Dove, D.H. Vampires and a B-25. Read this book more times than I can count, not a complicated technical read but very enjoyable none the less.
    Attached Files I have been round the world 11.83 times!


      Given all the recent fuss and fury over the latest film production of Dunkirk, this book is pretty topical:

      "Dunkirk", Julian Thompson, Pan Books, ISBN 978-15098-6004-3. 8.99

      This book is overly rich on detail. It is at its best when telling the story at individual, platoon or company level. I felt that continuity suffered when too many regimental names, numbers and other detail intruded.

      It is an excellent read and explains that the reason for the debacle lay with the defeatist French army leadership.


        The 17th Century Literature.


          "At Hitler's side". Nicolaus Von Below. Greenhill Books. ISBN 1-85367-468-0

          Von Below was one of Hitler's adjutants for most of the war years. He was very much an insider. He tells his story abetted by excuse after excuse. If you can overlook the propaganda, it is a gripping account of life very much at the heart of the Nazi establishment. The half truths, lies and evasions are to be expected, and indeed the reader isn't disappointed on that account.


            "Fighting thru' to Kohima". Michael Lowry, Pen & Sword Military Books. ISBN 184415802-0. 12.99

            This is a personal account of the British Army against the Japanese Army in Burma. It is compelling, savage, and does little to protect the reader against the sheer brutality of hand-to-hand battle implicit in trench warfare. Dealing with an implacable enemy, an equally implacable terrain and climate is perfectly described by this author.
            Last edited by John Green; 6th November 2017, 11:36.


              Caribbean Volunteers At War - Mark Johnson

              The story of the coloured volunteers who came to fly and fight with the RAF in the Second World War.
              Daren Cogdon

              Spitfire fanatic


                And your opinions?
       I have been round the world 11.83 times!


                  It's not bad so far.
                  Daren Cogdon

                  Spitfire fanatic


                    Marylands over Malta - the extraordinary story of Adrian Warburton the legendary recce pilot in Malta during 1941/2.


                      "Voices from the Battle of Britain". Henry Buckton, David & Charles, ISBN-13: 978-0-7153-3623-6 19.99

                      Yet another very competent account of the Battle of Britain, provided by those who took part. The excitement, the sense of urgency, anxiety and fear of failure are on show.

                      It is instructive to note (see recent discussion on Historic re convoy CW9 - Peewit) that the author confirms that the subsequent German attacks on CW9 were a consequence of detection by recently installed German radar and not as some opinion has it, by observer visual sighting.

                      A very useful account.


                        Hi All,
                        Thought it was about time I read my World War One by AJP Taylor that I was given as a Christmas present in the 70's, sadly I have never read but
                        looking forward to this and his follow up about WW2...



                          "Air Force Blue", Patrick Bishop, William Collins, ISBN 978-0-00-743313-1, 20. Tesco price 12.

                          This is a history of the RAF by accomplished historian, Patrick Bishop, published to coincide with the centenary of the RAF, next year 2018.

                          A good account but, I found it slightly underwhelming. Mr. Bishop delves into the characters and personalities of the RAF top brass. He very adequately explains the administrative background and shines a light into some of the more bizarre - with hindsight - military policy decisions that still attract comment.

                          If you need to take a look at how the RAF was assembled from its earliest days, this is for you.
                          Last edited by John Green; 4th December 2017, 11:39.


                            "Mosquito Missions", Martin Bowman, publishers: Pen & Sword, ISBN 178159167 - 9. 19.99.

                            I came late to this book first published in 2012. It features a wealth of detail about the development and performance of the Wooden Wonder, its deployment thru' the RAF and the uses to which this fabulous aeroplane was put.

                            The author refers - albeit briefly - to the number of aircrew casualties suffered as a consequence of offensive operations flown in appalling weather conditions merely to maintain continuity of attack on German targets. A dreadful waste of skilled and courageous aircrews and resources.


                              They Gave Me a Seafire - Commander R "Mike" Crosley

                              The book charts Crosley's service career in the Fleet Air Arm during the entire period of the Second World War. Part of his service saw him in action aboard HMS Eagle, flying Sea Hurricanes on the Harpoon and Pedestal Malta convoys of June and August 1942. It was during this time that he shot down his first enemy aircraft and survived the dramatic sinking of HMS Eagle. From there he graduated on to Seafires, (the Naval equivalent of the Spitfire), and flew this type in Combat Air Patrols over Norway and ramrod strikes from Operation Torch (the invasion of French North Africa in November 1942), through to D-Day in June 1944 in the European Theatre of Operations, and then in the Pacific abroad HMS Implacable as part of the British Pacific Fleet in 1945 until the end of the Pacific War, by which time he had command of his own combined squadron, 801 and 880.
                              Daren Cogdon

                              Spitfire fanatic


                                Bomber Command, Max Hastings. Pan books.

                                This, for me, is a re-read. It is comprehensive and holds the readers interest thru' out. Some will take issue with Hastings' conclusions - I did.


                                  "Patronising B##stards", Quentin Letts, Constable, ISBN 978-1-4721-2735-8 16.99

                                  Mr. Letts writes for the Sunday Times and the Daily Mail so, hence, is everyone's favourite journalist! This book is a savage assault on the hypocrisy, humbug and cant endemic in British public life. The author is merciless in exposing the intellectually warped thinking processes of those who consider themselves our masters.

                                  His excoriating prose flays and strips the veneer of make believe acceptability that cloaks the activities of champagne socialists, the kingdom of luvvies, foreign aid, the Civil Service, and the squirming heaving pulsating mass of cheap carpetbaggers that runs thru' our society like a glutinous thread of sewage.

                                  Quite a book! The author writes what most of us think.


                                    "RAF Fighter pilots in WW2". Martin Bowman, Pen & Sword Books Ltd. ISBN 1783831928 25.00

                                    Analytical account of the individual performances of RAF Fighter Command flight and ground crews during the last war; leaning more towards 1940/41/42. Each chapter accompanied by 'endnotes'.

                                    Bowman tells of one incident which considerably altered my perception. I'm sure that most are familiar with the 'Battle of Barking Creek'. This was an infamous incident when in a case of mistaken identity, Spitifres attacked Hurricanes over East London during the later part of 1939 just after war was declared.

                                    At the Courts Martial that followed, Sailor Malan who gave the order to attack what he had identified as enemy aircraft was persuaded to give evidence for the prosecution against P/O John Freeborn one of his own pilots. The Court very properly found that it amounted to no more than a regrettable act of the 'fog of war'.

                                    Freeborn's counsel, Sir Patrick Hastings, assisted by Roger Bushell, having heard Malan's denial of responsibility, called Malan 'a bare faced liar' !


                                      "Hurricane", Brian Milton. Andre Deutsch & Co. ISBN 978-0-233-00318-4 7.99.

                                      This is an examination of the worth of that most durable of WW2 fighters; the Hurricane. Based on manufacturers and official information supported by the accounts of those who flew this iconic aircraft. Concluding chapters deal with the advent of the Typhoon and Tempest and reference to the war in the Far East.

                                      First rate account, holding the readers attention all the way.


                                        "The Millionaires' Squadron", Tom Moulson, Pen & Sword, ISBN 178345339-2. 25.00.

                                        This is a very entertaining account of the doings of 601 squadron of the RAF from its pre war inception thru' to its disbandment after WW2.

                                        They were certainly a wild bunch always pushing the accepted boundaries; they might to-day be known as 'Hooray Henry's'. The titles of the book suggests that most of them were united by extreme wealth. As fighter pilots they fought well and partied even better !


                                          The recent snowy weather prompted a mini plethora of reading.

                                          Cover of Darkness by Roderick Chisholm DSO DFC.
                                          Chisholm was a pre war Auxiliary who served in the RAF 1940 - 45,a very honest and self effacing book,he scored 9 victories and ended the war as an Air Commodore.

                                          Eighty knots to mach2 (45 years in the cockpit) by Richard Linnekin.
                                          Linnekin was a US Navy officer,starting out on a cruiser and then became a pilot - qualifying on 80 knot biplanes,flew from carriers during Korean War and later became a test pilot.

                                          Biplane by Richard Bach.
                                          Bach traded his Fairchild 24 for a 1929 Detroit-Ryan Parks P-2A Biplane,and this book is the story of him teaching himself to fly the Parks by flying it from New Jersey back home to california (2600 miles - coast to coast)