I was 5 years old at the outbreak of war between Great Britain and the Nazis. I saw bombs dropping in 1942 and, eleven years later, gained my wings after joining the RAF.
My first novel "Dartmouth Conspiracy" starts with bombs dropping on the Royal Naval College in Dartmouth UK, an event that I witnessed. The story is largely seen through the eyes of a German pilot who comes to face his personal demons after the war. The aerial reconnaissance photo that appears on the back cover was taken from a Luftwaffe aircraft in October 1940 and shows the river Dart with the Royal Naval College next to a small white cloud. During research I discovered that the two Spitfires I saw chasing a Focke-Wulf 190 up our road at rooftop height were flown by Czech pilots of the RAF's 310 Squadron. Imagine my surprise when photos of squadron members Dolezal and Kimlicka came through my letter box after a former Czech fighter pilot had found "Dartmouth Conspiracy" in his local library. Take a look at them on my website www.JamesStevenson.me.uk
"Fly the Storm" was inspired by memories of my cousin Margie Fairweather, a female pilot in the Air Transport Auxiliary (ATA) who died in a flying accident in 1944. ATA pilots(1152 men and 166 women)flew every type of aircraft used by the RAF from factories to air bases all over Britain during WW2. Their contribution to the war effort was largely ignored at the time, so this is my attempt not only to write a page-turning thriller for insomniacs, but also a tribute to the forgotten pilots.
My third book "Stalin's Had It Now" is a light-hearted look at my two years' National Service in the RAF during the closing stages of Joseph Stalin's reign of terror when World War Three between Communist Oppression and Western Democracy threatened. I learnt to fly jet fighters in preparation for all-out war, but never fired a shot in anger. The title is from a quotation by a sarcastic drill instructor who looked at his raw recruits with disdain. "So you lot want to be pilots eh? Bloody hell, Stalin's had it now!" This book contains over 50 photographs.