'A fascinating history' THE DAILY MAIL 'Wonderful stories - a well-written account of the last line of defense' THE DAILY MIRROR 'No one like Norman Longmate manages to convey with such verve and authority many of the most intriguing aspects of the Home Front in the Second World War' JULIET GARDINER 'Just how close the TV was to reality is amply demonstrated in Norman Longmate's affectionate tribute to the men who served in the real Dad's Army... the Germans may never have invaded, but Longmate's book contains enough examples of quiet heroism to suggest that had they done so they might have been in for a nasty surprise.' THE MAIL ON SUNDAY 'Norman Longmate's finely illustrated and produced volume... is full of true stories every bit as entertaining as the hit TV series' SOLDIER MAGAZINE --The Daily Mirror
About the Author
Norman Longmate, ex-Private 'F' Company, 3rd Sussex Battalion, Home Guard, joined 'Dad's Army' at the same age as the fictional character 'Pike', seventeen. To this day he contends that the much-loved sitcom was remarkably accurate in it's portrayal of life in the Home Guard. After the war he read modern history at Worcester College, Oxford and went on to work as a journalist and radio producer of history documentaries. He is a Fellow of the Royal Historical Society and has written more than twenty books, mainly on the Second World War. For this book, and many others, he made requests through regional newspapers for veterans to contact him with their memories. To this day he maintains a massive archive of original recordings and letters. He was historical adviser on the hugely popular Channel 4 TV show, THE 1940 HOUSE. His other books include DOODLEBUGS: THE STORY OF THE FLYING BOMBS ('Full of sad, funny and harrowing anecdotes' THE DAILY TELEGRAPH, 'Consolidates his position as the most evocative historian of the 1940s Home Front' THE TIMES); AIR RAID: COVENTRY 1940 ('The definitive account' COVENTRY EVENING CHRONICLE); THE HOME FRONT ('A wonderful book' JENNY UGLOW); HOW WE LIVED THEN: A HISTORY OF EVERYDAY LIFE DURING THE SECOND WORLD WAR ('The best social chronicle of the period I have read' THE SPECTATOR, 'A marvelously comprehensive panorama of the six shattering years misses nothing... Excellent' THE SUNDAY TELEGRAPH); IF BRITAIN HAD FALLEN ('An excellent and fascinating book' THE SCOTSMAN); THE WORKHOUSE ('Finely researched' THE SPECTATOR, 'A readable and impressively-researched history of the workhouse - comprehensive and moving' PUNCH); ISLAND FORTRESS: THE DEFENSE OF GREAT BRITAIN, 1603-1945 ('An enthralling account' JAN MORRIS, THE INDEPENDENT, 'An excellent study. Elegantly written, constantly fascinating narrative history at its best' THE GUARDIAN); THE BOMBERS: ROYAL AIR FORCE AIR OFFENSIVE AGAINST GERMANY, 1939-45 ('An exceptionally good book' THE FIELD). He lives in London.