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Fighter Heroes of WW1,
This review is from: Fighter Heros of WWI (Paperback)
This book deals with the subject mainly through the letters home of those involved, so writing it involved a good deal of research. The upside for the author is that, having selected his source material, much of the book is already written for him. This is a technique which the author has used before, for example, in a previous title `Forgotten Voices of the Blitz'. The method has the advantage that the reader connects with events through first hand testimony.
In this case several things became clear. The first was that aircraft design was accelerated greatly by the war. The second was the incredible importance of class during this period, which was particularly hard on sergeant pilots, few in number, who had no mess of their own but couldn't use the officers' mess which the other pilots used. The third was that when usable parachutes were developed the top brass ordered several hundred but didn't provide any to aircrew - on the grounds they would perform better if there was no escape route!