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The Jail That Went to Sea: An Untold Story of the Battle of the Atlantic,1941-42 [Paperback]

Peter Haining
3.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)

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There is a newer edition of this item:
The Jail That Went to Sea: An Untold Story of the Battle of the Atlantic, 1941-42 (World War II Stories Series) The Jail That Went to Sea: An Untold Story of the Battle of the Atlantic, 1941-42 (World War II Stories Series) 3.3 out of 5 stars (3)
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Book Description

17 Jun 2004
How a group of regenerate hoodlums became seamen and braved both the elements and Nazi U-Boats. Not forgetting how the whole operation was nearly scuttled...In 1941 the British people had their backs to the wall in their lone fight against the might of Hitler's Germany. America was neutral, at least until the bombing of Pearl Harbor. Glasgow became the starting point for one of the most amazing and, until now, untold episodes of the war. Government officials desperate for men to sail merchant ships across the Atlantic to collect vital equipment and supplies from North America devised a plan to enlist convicts from Barlinnie Prison and use them as crew for a 25,000-ton merchantman, the George Washington. This unprecedented and dangerous operation was probably the nearest thing to press gang tactics since the days of Lord Nelson. Quite simply a choice of death or glory, this book relates the extraordinary story of those men through the accounts of two survivors, plus the log and memories of Captain David Bone and Glasgow police records and documents.


Product details

  • Paperback: 192 pages
  • Publisher: Robson Books Ltd (17 Jun 2004)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 186105727X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1861057273
  • Product Dimensions: 19.7 x 13.1 x 1.6 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 936,194 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Product Description

About the Author

Peter Haining is the author of The Day War Broke Out and Spitfire Summer, a best-selling account of the Battle of Britain. Before becoming a full-time writer, he was a newspaper reporter, feature writer and publishing director. He is the author of Sweeney Todd (1861055870) and The Flying Bomb War (1861055811), also published by Robson Books. He lives in Suffolk.

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Customer Reviews

3.3 out of 5 stars
3.3 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
7 of 10 people found the following review helpful
1.0 out of 5 stars an untold story that would be best left untold 7 Oct 2008
Format:Paperback
This is without question the worst tale I have ever read - it is, to paraphrase Monty Python - a non-story.
It's over-dramatised garbage, a feeble attempt to make a story out of nothing and features probably the worst attempts at interpeting a Scottish accent it has ever been my misfortune to encounter.
It was so bad it was embarrassing.
I never part with non-fiction works - especially on marine matters.
I broke my own rule on this one; it was consigned with undue haste to the nearest charity shop.
I have scored the book one star simply because there isn't a facility to give a minus score....
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1 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Gift for historian 24 May 2012
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
This was purchased for my historian father In Law. According to him this book is fascinating and offers and incite to a hide world during WWII
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great story 27 Jan 2013
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I originally bought this for my son... my 22 year old grandson started reading it before I managed to get it wrapped up... so I ordered another one... and then my husband got into it... so 3rd time lucky, my son got it in the end.. I haven't read it myself yet... but my 3 men have really enjoyed it and couldn't put it down..
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 5.0 out of 5 stars  1 review
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A fascinating glimpse into an oft-overlooked vignette of history 7 Sep 2005
By Midwest Book Review - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback
Written by a former newspaper reporter turned British historian, The Jail That Went To Sea: An Untold Story Of The Battle Of The Atlantic, 1941-42 is a true story of World War II. Despite Britain's valiant and lonely struggle against Hitler's Germany, Glasgow remained the "Gangster Capital of the British Isles", where murderous mobs controlled crime, vice, and rackets. The government, desperate for men to sail merchant ships across the Atlantic patrolled by U-boats and collect crucial supplies, implemented and unprecedented plan to press convicts from Glasgow's Barlinnie Prison to crew the merchant ship, the George Washington. The Jail That Went To Sea reveals plots of mutiny, vicious rivalries and firm alliances, brings to life the lethal Glasgow underworld, and describes how the dangerous operation was very nearly snuffed out. A fascinating glimpse into an oft-overlooked vignette of history.
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