Through the darkest days of the Second World War, an elite group of courageous, gifted women risked their lives as courier pilots, flying Lancaster Bombers, Spitfires and many other aircraft in hundreds of perilous missions across the country. The role of these women pilots of the Air Transport Auxiliary was to deliver the planes to the male RAF pilots who would take them into battle, dangerous work which the women carried out unarmed, without radios. Fifteen would lose their lives. In The Female Few, five of these astonishingly brave women tell their stories for the first time, awe inspiring tales of incredible risk, tenacity and sacrifice. Their spirit and fearlessness in the face of death still resonates down the years, and their accounts reveal a forgotten chapter in the history of the Second World War. As Yvonne Macdonald, now 90 and living in Cape Cod, says: ‘It was a kind of freedom you never get any other way, it was as if you had wings sewn on your back. A lot of people here in Cape Cod don’t even know I was in World War Two. Or what I did.’ They do now.
Jacky Hyams is a London based journalist and non fiction author who has written extensively, on a wide range of topics, for many of the leading mass market newspapers and magazines in the UK and Australia for several years.
Her passion for 20th Century history led to the publication of a successful personal memoir about London in the 1950s, Bombsites and Lollipops, published by John Blake Publishing in 2011. This was followed by an exploration of the world of the Edwardian stately home,The Real Life Downton Abbey (also published by Blake) in 2011. Jacky's third historically related title, The Female Few: Spitfire Pilots of the ATA, was published by The History Press in 2012.
Her followup memoir to Bombsites and Lollipops, White Boots & Miniskirts: A True Story of Life in the Swinging Sixties, was published by John Blake Publishing in February 2013.
Jacky's most recent book, Bomb Girls: Britain's Secret Army,the Munitions Women of WW2, was published in August 2013 by John Blake Publishing.