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Castles in the Air: The Story of the B-17 Flying Fortress Crews of the US 8th Air Force [Hardcover]

Martin Bowman

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 208 pages
  • Publisher: P. Stephens; 1st edition (18 Jun 1984)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0850596750
  • ISBN-13: 978-0850596755
  • Product Dimensions: 23.2 x 16.7 x 2.8 cm
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,269,702 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description


Recreates the tension and terror of flying the legendary B-17 bomber across the skies of Nazi Germany. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Amazon.com: 4.3 out of 5 stars  3 reviews
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The best adventure stories are the ones that are true 11 May 2012
By Nelson Johnsrud - Published on Amazon.com
Seeing no reviews here, I thought I would add my take. I have had this book for many years, and I keep coming back to it periodically to refresh the stories in my mind. This book chronicles a good cross section of the hazardous life of a B-17 bomber crew over Nazi Europe. There are stories of survival and loss in this book that are made more amazing by the fact that it is all true. You can't make this stuff up. The 8th Air Force took a horrific beating while flying strategic missions over a very powerful and aggressive Nazi resistance. There are photos throughout the book of planes so torn apart by enemy action that they never flew again, but somehow made it back to England. There are also the sad stories of the demise of many hundreds and thousands of planes. The life expectancy of a B-17 crew was less than the length of their tour of duty, but they kept flying. Thousands of airmen were lost among the bomber crews over Germany, but the formations kept coming, nearly daily. The planes came by the hundreds, and even in excess of 1000 planes on many missions. Can you imagine looking up to see over 1000 planes in the sky at the same time, in tight formation? Bomber streams over 5 miles long, and also miles high. We'll never see that again. Can you imagine bringing home a plane so badly torn up in the air that the crew had to resort to tying sections together with parachute harnesses just to make it home? Can you imagine manning a machine gun in an open waist window at 30,000 feet in temperatures around 30 below zero? On a 6 to 8 hour mission?

I pray along with countless others that we never need to witness this kind of bloodshed again, but I also say prayers of thanks that men like these were there when they were called to service.
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars husband's favorite "war" book 19 April 2014
By Marion Jones - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
this is probably the best book about the wonderful Flying Fortresses . .. . my husband flew in one in WWII and he recommended this book to everyone, also bought copies for all the boys in the family.
3.0 out of 5 stars I was disappointed it did not have my dad's bomb 31 Aug 2014
By david cadena - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Just ok. I was disappointed it did not have my dad's bomb group
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