- Audio CD
- Publisher: Soundings Audio Books (1 Nov. 2007)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1407900889
- ISBN-13: 978-1407900889
- Product Dimensions: 19.8 x 18.6 x 4.2 cm
- Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars See all reviews (68 customer reviews)
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 2,735,158 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
Bomber Boys: Fighting Back 1940-1945
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‘A superb human portrait.’ Daily Mail
‘A deeply humane, lucidly written and powerful tribute to some of the unsung heroes of the Second World War.’ Michael Burleigh, Sunday Times
‘Superbly written and authoritative…the members of Bomber Command now have a fitting commemoration of their heroic deeds.’ Observer
‘This is the best kind of military history – the kind in which the author never loses sight of the impact of war on its victims, German as well as British, and those who were left behind. “Bomber Boys” will remind the survivors that they and their lost comrades are not forgotten. And it reminds the rest of us what their war was all about.’ Daniel Johnson, Evening Standard
‘This is a terrific book, so riveting, exciting and moving that it must help bring back the Bomber Boys to their rightful place of honour. A true war memorial.’ Montagu Curzon, Spectator
‘A compelling account of life in RAF Bomber Command.’ Telegraph--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
From the Back Cover
In ‘Fighter Boys’ Patrick Bishop brought to life the pilots who flew Spitfires and Hurricanes in the summer of 1940. Their skill and bravery decided the Battle of Britain, which saved the nation from invasion and created the conditions for Hitler's defeat.
In ‘Bomber Boys’ he tells a different but equally fascinating story. The 125,000 men from all over the world who passed through Bomber Command were engaged in a form of warfare that had never been fought before and never would be again. Between 1940 and 1945 they flew continuously, stopping only when weather made operations impossible. For much of that time they were the only warriors capable of hitting Germany in its own territory. There was nothing romantic about their struggle. Often barely out of boyhood they lived on bleak bases, flying at night on long, nerve-racking missions that often ended in death. The odds of surviving were stacked heavily against them. In all 55,000 were killed, nearly one in ten of all the British and Commonwealth dead.
Despite these sacrifices, the Bomber Boys have remained on the edges of our collective memory of the war. When the fighting stopped they became something of a a political embarrassment. Their actions have been the subject of a controversy that continues to the present, obscuring not only the losses they suffered but also the courage, comradeship and fortitude with which they fought.
In this powerful and moving book Patrick Bishop describes compellingly the character, feelings and motivations of the bomber crews and pays tribute to their heroism and determination. They were among the best of their generation, who were called on to carry out one of the grimmest duties of the Second World War. ‘Bomber Boys’ brilliantly restores these men to their rightful place in our consciousness.--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title. See all Product description
Top Customer Reviews
It describes the strategic air war against Germany by the RAF in the Second World War. That description makes it sound maybe a bit dry and academic but it is far from being either of those things! It tells the story of this chapter in the war from a very human point of view. For example, there are chapters describing the airmen's training, lives at their bases, their motivation, how they dealt with the fear of being killed whilst carrying out operation over Europe at night and many other highly interesting aspects of the lives of these remarkable men.
The book also describes the strategy behind the bombing of Germany, from the beginning to the end of the war and gives a good insight into the main commanders - people such as Charles Portal and Bomber Harris.
The story told in these pages is often very moving and I once I had finished the book I thought about it for a long time afterwards, quite unlike other books I have read. I felt great sympathy for all the men of Bomber Command, which has never had the vital role it played in World War II properly publicly acknowledged. I hope that this book will cause many to ask why this is so and perhaps focus efforts to have a permanent memorial specific to these men built, and to have this done before the last of them die and they recede from living memory.
Nor does the book shirk from the real moral ambiguities of the campaign and follows through to officialdom's post-war embarrassment of their role. The book fills in many of the gaps that I did not appreciate when talking to my father and allows me now to understand how truly heroic his and his fellow aircrewmen's contribution was. I only wish that my father could have survived a couple more years to have enjoyed reading it.
· Pilot: Pilot Officer Frederick MATTHEWS Royal Australian Air Force, 25 years old
· Bombardier: Flight Officer Franck HOLLAND Royal Australian Fleet Reserve, 32 years old
· Navigator: Flight Sergeant Alistair ROSE Royal New Zealand Air Force, 20 years old
· Gunner: Flight Sergeant Albert HARRIS Royal New Zealand Air Force, 23 years old
· Radio officer: Sergeant Kennet CORK Royal Air Force, 21 years old
· Mechanic: Sergeant John KNIGHT Royal Air Force, 27 years old
· Gunner: Sergeant Henry OTT Royal Air Force, 19 years old
The book succinctly details the strategy and tactics of the bombing campaign. It is an explanation not a justification - none is needed - where the sheer terror of the aircrews experience is equalled by the horror of those beneath the bombs. Bishop presents the mass of data well. He gives a balanced account of Anglo American strategic goals/arguments and his comments on Dresden were reasoned. Before that he explains how aircrew found love, and what happened to the WRAF who fell for a married Wing Commander. What emerges are stories, how crews were recruited, trained, commanded and lived. This book is rich in detail, about people rather than military technology or command and control structures.
Bishop allows us to understand the most controversial aspect of the bombing campaign in Europe. After the war there was little recognition for those engaged in the bomber offensive, ineffective and savage the politicians preferred to ignore those who had participated.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
One of the best books I have read on the air force in WW2. Bishop not only describes in detail the effort of bomber command from inception to Arthur Harris' reign but he also... Read morePublished 9 months ago by Amazon Customer
Shows the reality of what went on in the top brass.The pilots,crews,groundcrews deserve so much betterPublished 13 months ago by leslie meech
I have just read some of the reviews of Bomber Boys, and have read the book itself too. Some of the people who have offered comment may be interested in (if they don't know it... Read morePublished 18 months ago by Thomas Naish