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Men Of Air: The Doomed Youth Of Bomber Command (Bomber War Trilogy 2) Paperback – 12 Jun 2008

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Product details

  • Paperback: 448 pages
  • Publisher: W&N (12 Jun. 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0753823985
  • ISBN-13: 978-0753823989
  • Product Dimensions: 19.6 x 12.7 x 3.3 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (51 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 191,205 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

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Tales of everday heroism (GOOD BOOK GUIDE)

Book Description

The story of the everyday heroism of British bomber crews in 1944 - the turning point year in Bomber Command's war against Germany.

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Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

19 of 19 people found the following review helpful By CherryBee on 3 May 2008
Format: Hardcover
A first rate book! The second of a (projected) trilogy about the bomber war from the dark days of 1943 to the final victory of 1945. 'Men of Air' is an account of the gradual turning of the tide in favour of Bomber Command during 1944 - still the horrendous attrition rate for operataions of deep penetration into Germany in the early months (and on some later occasions), but the very positive contribution of the 'Bomber Boys' to the success of D-Day is recorded here, something that tends to be overlooked by some. A fair assessment of the problems facing those tasked with planning operations, although some of the decisions made seem extraordinary. Kevin Wilson manages to make these young men and the odds they faced very real. Highly recommended!
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15 of 15 people found the following review helpful By Richard Corbata on 30 Jan. 2008
Format: Hardcover
A very well researched and laid out book . The author manages to convey the need for this campaign and the varying results without any hint of bias. The reader is encouraged , in my opinion , to draw their on conclusions as regards the validity of the bombing campaign and how modern historians have treated those extremely brave men who flew for bomber command.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Manly Reading TOP 1000 REVIEWER on 28 Mar. 2011
Format: Paperback
This is a sort-of sequel to Bomber Boys, and (with Journey's End) part of a trilogy of books focusing on the men of RAF Bomber Command in WWII. This covers 1944, starting with the Battle of Berlin and ending with the return to Germany after the "Transportation Plan" support of D-Day and the unexpected role of tactical air support in the war in Normandy.

Unlike Hastings Bomber Command, this is not about the big picture, or Bomber Harris, or whether it was all worth it after all. This is a book for and about those men who flew over occupied Europe and struck back in the only way the Allies could. You understand the moments of sheer terror being lit up in a searchlight, bailing out of a burning plane, making an emergency landing on two engines with dead and wounded around you.

There is also an excellent chapter on those who bailed out, survived (not all did), and ended up in a POW camp. The Great Escape - and other escapes - are covered in detail. There is heroism here, as much as in the planes above Germany.

This is an excellent book on the bravery of those who flew bombing missions in the dark days of WWII. It will help ensure that their courage and sacrifice is never forgotten.
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26 of 28 people found the following review helpful By B., Joan on 20 Feb. 2009
Format: Paperback
My Father was an air Gunner in World War 2 with the RCAF, stationed at Skipton-on-Swale in Yorkshire in 1944 and 1945. This incredible book helped me to understand the quiet heroism of the very young crews who did their job, night after night. Easy to read, well documented, well written, but also filled with thorough understanding of what it was like. If you have a relative who was in the war, and you are only going to read one book about it, this is the one.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Daryl Sahli on 14 Nov. 2012
Format: Paperback
This is a very detailed and well considered account of the lives of the aircrew in bomber command. The research is impressive and the author is clearly a gifted writer. One aspect that I find frustrating in this book as with many other histories on bomber command is the lack of recognition of airmen from Rhodesia. The author does not even refer to 44 Squadron by its proper name, 44 (Rhodesia) Squadron. While this squadron was by no means only manned by Rhodesians they accounted for nearly 50% of the pilots and crew at any point in time and many of the ground crew. In early 1944 of the commander of the squadron was an ex-school teacher from Gwelo in the midlands of Rhodesia. On page 9 the author acknowledges the contribution of Eire and the Commonwealth countries, Australia, New Zealand, Canada and 'a few from South Africa', but the 2,409 Rhodesian airmen who served in World War II are ignored. Of these 697 (29%) never returned. Rhodesia lost more men per capita than any other Commonwealth country. It is difficult to understand why the author would make such a pointed omission.
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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful By Mr. Andrew Instrell on 19 Nov. 2008
Format: Paperback
Having spent many hours engrossed in the content of this book, I can certainly say this is one of the better accounts of life in bomber command during WW2. It really opens your eyes as to what it was like to serve. I actually felt I was there during certain parts of the book. Highly ecommended. Another excellent book is 'Carried on the Wind' by Sean Feast, The story of Ted Manners (101 Squadron - ABC operator on Rusty Waughman's Crew). A riveting read to anyone interested in Bomber Command.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Andy_atGC TOP 100 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 7 May 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This book was originally published in 2007 and may now be out of print in hardback format. It is however still available as a paperback. In this instance, it is a substantial hardback purchased previously read and in excellent condition that is printed on moderately heavy paper and with several photographic insertions of some of the crews and their aircraft. Its sub-title provides a hint of their realities and expectations. When first discovered, it was mentioned within another book for its references to a former crew member who later became a POW and within which other similar stories were told; it was not then stated or understood that the book was the middle volume of a trilogy and the remainder has since been ordered to remedy the unintended oversight.

This book concentrates on the last full year of the War, 1944. It was the period when Allied losses of aircraft and crew were probably at their overall highest and the intention was still to damage German industry and morale and thereby, hopefully, shorten the War. The end was not yet in sight and, although battles were being won and former occupied territories were being liberated, no-one knew whether there would be a few months or even years before final victory was achieved.

With heavy losses of crew members, those remaining within a crew could be affected by the loss of close long-term friends who may in turn be replaced by the inexperienced. Sometimes whole crews were lost and other crews would be affected but life had to continue. There may be another raid tomorrow or the next day, but there could be relief for a few days with 'survivor's leave' which would give them a chance to spend time with family, a girlfriend or wife and not to think about the War.
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