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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Intense Story Of A Bomber Crew Under Fire
This novel starts off with the story of a crippled Stirling bomber aircraft struggling to get back home to Britain. The pilot survives his painful wounds and is given the task of training a new crew. The book asks the question as to whether a man who is emotionally damaged by the war can keep enough self-control to take command of a rookie bomber crew and keep them...
Published on 24 Jan 2012 by Charles E Shepherd

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Finishing School
If you want to know all the ins and out of a Lanc,this the book to read.
From flying it and all the controls it is meticulous in detail and extremely well written.
Personally I liked most of it,the Mills and Boon interlude playing tennis and tea with the middle class complete with all the usual mannerisms made me cringe and I nearly put the book down.
Glad...
Published 2 months ago by shipwreck


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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Intense Story Of A Bomber Crew Under Fire, 24 Jan 2012
This review is from: Finishing School (The MacKay series Book 1) (Kindle Edition)
This novel starts off with the story of a crippled Stirling bomber aircraft struggling to get back home to Britain. The pilot survives his painful wounds and is given the task of training a new crew. The book asks the question as to whether a man who is emotionally damaged by the war can keep enough self-control to take command of a rookie bomber crew and keep them alive during their first dangerous mission. The reader can visualise the cramped scenes within a damaged Lancaster that is under attack. The tensions within a team from all corners of the Commonwealth contrast with the hero's search for his own peace and a romance under the disruptions of wartime. David Bruce has built a reputation for writing historically accurate stories with realistic characters. Fiction about the bomber campaigns has not been explored since the 1960's and 1970's so this is a welcome publication. Finishing School reminds the reader of how this aspect of warfare combined the use of the best of 1940's technology with the need for men with strong nerves to throw themselves into the storm of enemy fire that David Bruce describes so vividly. The tensions keep building and the danger keeps increasing right until the last page. I won't give away the ending but it leaves open the possibility of a welcome sequel.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Authentic and Thoroughly Researched, 29 Jun 2014
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This review is from: Finishing School (The MacKay series Book 1) (Kindle Edition)
The book started well, introducing the main character in a dramatic opening, but some of the technical detail made me wonder if I would be able to follow the storyline. The story continued, introducing the other members of the bomber crew and telling how they had come together. The technical details about which I had worried soon began to enhance the story and increase the authenticity. My father was a Flight Engineer in Halifax bombers and, although he was never averse to talking about his war, I didn't know what to ask him. This story was exciting; the language accurate for the time (look back at early newsreel and films of the era) and explained so much of the conditions within a bomber that I had never appreciated. Unfortunately my father died while I was reading the book, but I have a better understanding of how he spent the war, whilst enjoying an exciting, though sobering story. I look forward to the next one.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Finishing School, 31 July 2014
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This review is from: Finishing School (The MacKay series Book 1) (Kindle Edition)
If you want to know all the ins and out of a Lanc,this the book to read.
From flying it and all the controls it is meticulous in detail and extremely well written.
Personally I liked most of it,the Mills and Boon interlude playing tennis and tea with the middle class complete with all the usual mannerisms made me cringe and I nearly put the book down.
Glad I didn't but perhaps in his next book he will spend a bit more time with the lives and Women of other members of the Lanc.
It wasn't just the Pilot who was on the plane.
All in all very good book but too slow for me but I will read others by him hoping for a more down to earth novel of all crew members.
Recommended,just but not if you want more action as I did.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Neville Shute Fans, 28 Jun 2014
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This review is from: Finishing School (The MacKay series Book 1) (Kindle Edition)
I hadn't come across any of David's books before and was really surprised to discover that depth of research, the day to day detail and exciting storyline, had all the hall marks of that master story teller, Neville Shute! Fans will love this!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars An educational tale, 28 Jun 2014
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V. G. N. (North Lincs UK) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Finishing School (The MacKay series Book 1) (Kindle Edition)
I expected another 'my life in the forces' story. However I found it to be an interesting, educational and heart warming tale of life for many young WW2 airmen. It was written in an easy going manner which defied you to ' abandon it midway.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars An engrossing fictional account of life in Bomber Command., 29 Jun 2014
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This review is from: Finishing School (The MacKay series Book 1) (Kindle Edition)
A well-researched and well-written story, and an excellent companion to John Nichols book on the Nuremburg raid which I read before this. The flying and combat scenes are vivid and put the reader on board Lancaster M for Mike.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Bomber crew story, 30 Jun 2014
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P. Prentice (London NW11) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Finishing School (The MacKay series Book 1) (Kindle Edition)
Very interesting book, certainly gives the feel what it must have been like to be one of a Lancaster crew at at that time of the war. A bit predictable in places but well worth a read.
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4.0 out of 5 stars The MacKay series Book 1 - Finishing School, 5 Sep 2014
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This review is from: Finishing School (The MacKay series Book 1) (Kindle Edition)
We'll plotted and very accurate on the technical detail this book is, however, definitely not the conventional bomber command story. Its central characters (the aircraft crew) are well drawn and have substance. Peripheral characters too are solid not just mentioned in passing. I'm not a regular reader of this type of book and, frankly, thought I would dislike it; I was only reading out of curiosity. I found however that I got drawn in to the story to point that I couldn't put the thing down!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Life in the Raw, 14 Jun 2014
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This review is from: Finishing School (The MacKay series Book 1) (Kindle Edition)
This book is very readable and difficult to put down.A mandatory read for those of us who experienced only National Service.
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5.0 out of 5 stars An important record, 11 Jun 2014
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Methuselah's father (Maidenhead, Berks United Kingdom) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: Finishing School (The MacKay series Book 1) (Kindle Edition)
This is a well researched book into the training and operations of a Lancaster crew such that none of the operational side of the book has any jarring errors.. The decision to cast the story as a novel is not helped by slightly stilted interaction between the humans when off duty but this plot device carries the story along as we learn to understand the fearsome burdens placed on crews learning their trade and facing battle.
The author usefully reminds us that Bomber Command crews despite high losses were not helpless victims plodding into battle but were thoughtful tacticians doing everything in their power to complete a successful attack.
I could read more by this author as he sharpens his skills.
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