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Winged victory (Consul books. no. 1492.) Unknown Binding – 1966


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Product details

  • Unknown Binding
  • ASIN: B0018IJ54U
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (35 customer reviews)

Customer Reviews

4.7 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Jem Shaw on 7 Jan. 2012
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Fictionalised, I suspect, only slightly from Victor Yeates's personal experiences, this is a vivid, touching portrait of the life of an ordinary RFC pilot. As much a classic as Sagittarius Rising or No Parachute, this book deserves far greater recognition.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Mac Eddey on 7 Sept. 2012
Format: Kindle Edition
I have owned this book for about thirty years and regularly re-read it. The authenticity and immediacy always strike me. Like Frederick Manning's 'Middle parts of Fortune', it is a novel of the World War One penned by someone who was there. It is atmospheric, sympathetic but never steps over the line into sentimentality or cliché. If you are at all interested in aviation stories, this one is up there with the best.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By alexander craig on 12 July 2013
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A great triumph of writing. His words give a true picture of life as a pilot in World War 1. With far from perfect machines they faced death each day. The joy of flying which he perfectly describes is eroded by the constant slaughter in which he is involved. It is one of the best anti-war books I have read yet at the same time illuminates the great virtues of courage, humour, loyalty and honesty which all of us long to have.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Smokey Joe on 22 Feb. 2015
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I finished this book about a week ago and since that time I've found it hard to pick up another book to read. Although presented as fiction I feel sure this is as close a V M Yeates got to writing an autobiographical account of his experiences as a pilot during the last 10 months of the first world war. Although one can neither describe the prose nor the composition as first class literature what comes through is the authenticity of the accounts. This is an important book because it provides us with an insight into the feelings and minds of these first world warriors. What comes across again and again is the feeling of futility and manipulation by the army, the politicians and the 'folks back home'. It is sad to read the Yeates himself was barely recognised in his lifetime for this important contribution to first world war literature. Very highly recommended, indeed.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Jonper on 18 April 2012
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I had read this book before many years ago. It is still a very powerful representation of a WW1 fighter pilots life. You can understand why fighter pilots in 1940 were willing to pay £5 for a copy. Highly recommended for any aviation history buffs.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Bruce Marshall on 25 May 2013
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A very good and well researched novel of life as a pilot in the Royal Flying Corp. If read along with McCudden's Flying Fury and Mannock's King of the Air Fighters, you get a really good feel for what life must have been like in those days
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By A. Caldwell on 18 Dec. 2014
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A throughly great read, the questions and emotional roller coaster of war come to life in this classic of air warfare. As mentioned a number times this is the one book Second World War RAF pilots wanted, as it so well described the life and actions of a war flying pilot. The book which is semi-autobiographical is about the flying and friendship of a number of hut sharing pilots. Their thoughts, questions, fears and philosophical debates as they wait for the next "show" are brilliant. Written well before the Second World War, the author died in the early thirties, Yates, clear predicts that there will be another world war. His own personal experience of the last few days of active war flying lead him to write ....

"They called this the war to end war; so men were encouraged to fight on. Somehow it was understood to mean that the final victory of the Allies would end war for ever. But the blood of the German dead would remain unavenged; it would go on calling and calling through future years. War could never be ended by victorious war. "

Beautiful!
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This is an autobiographical novel, but there is no doubt that the events recorded happened to someone somewhere, and I suspect it was to Yeates himself. The period of the War over the Western front that the novel covers is one where the RFC (which morphed into the RAF on 1April 1918) had air superiority. Although the Sopwith Camels were becoming obsolete, newer German aircraft like the Fokker biplane were being flown by pilots who did not have the fighting spirit of 1916. Despite this superiority, British losses were still high, and Tom Cundall, the hero, is only able to continue his war by going on massive benders to deaden the sense of loss and fear that blights him. This book ranks with "Sagittarius Rising" as an unvarnished record of what it was like to fly fighters in the First World War. It is so good, that having finished it, I want to start reading it all over again straight away! I will probably be sensible and leave it for a few weeks, but I have the feeling that this will be a book that I'll read many times. Superb!
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