- Hardcover: 191 pages
- Publisher: Greenhill Books; New edition edition (1 Nov. 1991)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1853671045
- ISBN-13: 978-1853671043
- Product Dimensions: 1.9 x 14.6 x 22.9 cm
- Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars See all reviews (20 customer reviews)
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,666,161 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
I Flew for the Fuhrer: Story of a German Airman Hardcover – 1 Nov 1991
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Famous memoir by German fighter ace, illustrated with his personal photos. --This text refers to the Paperback edition.
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Top Customer Reviews
Knoke comes across as a complicated man. He seems likeable. He enjoys flying, and writes about the beauty of Norway's mountains. But he is clearly a product of his upbringing, and of a terrible regime. He describes the invasion of Poland as a liberation of the German minority from wanton massacres - perhaps he believed that in 1939, but the book was written in 1953, and is not a literal presentation of his diaries, it is a post-war adaptation.Read more ›
An unusual and well written book!
and finally,to humilliating defeat. Though Heinz Knoke was obviously a fantastic pilot he alone, could not stop the march of history.From his early life, to joining the Luftwaffe, to the harsh training, this is a charming book which chronicles the characters and the organisation that went to form a flight of ME 109,s, hell bent on stopping the bombers of the Allies. His account of a frontal attack on a Flying Fortress at some 600mph closing speed made the hairs on the back ofmy neck stand up.The book has an ironic ending too, that I won,t spoil for the readers of this great book.
Using his diary and logs, Heinz Knoke recalls life in the Luftwaffe as a 109 fighter pilot. He takes you through his life from the start of his career right up to the end of the war in Europe.
It is interesting to see the contrast between his early years and the last, with the ultimate destruction of the Luftwaffe as a fighting force. I often found myself wondering how somebody could survive so many close calls, when all around him were not returning to base.
Knoke describes his encounters with Liberators and B.17s in formations of hundreds, later with heavy fighter escort. I don't want to spoil it, but it is hard to imagine yourself as a lone pilot attacking a B.17 from the front, with eight enemy fighters on your tail.
Although fighting for the "other" side, I admire his skill and determination in defending his country. Having not lived through it, I found myself sympathising with somebody that was shooting down aircraft that fought for "our" side.
After reading the book I was interested in seeing what he was doing today, only to be saddened to read of his and his wifes death some years ago.
A true fighter Ace.
It gives a fantastic feel of the overwhelming power of the allied bomber offensive and gradual failure to combat it.
The steady change in tone of the book from confidence through determination to forlorn hope can only be gained from a person who fought on the 'wrong' side, and is an interesting microcosm of the experiences of the defeated. As a tale of aerial combat, however, it is very surprisingly similar to equivalent works by other successful (and surviving)fighter pilots of both the allies and axis air arms.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I loved this book. The diary format makes it flow really well and the whole range of topics you would expect from a fighter pilot are discussed. Read morePublished 23 months ago by C. Hayward
Amazing book. Was very interesting to
Get a whole new perspective on the war.
I ordered a copy as a gift for my military historian husband, who'd never heard of it. He loved it!
It's the story of one man's war, and it's a great read - he couldn't... Read more
A good story, well written in diary form and interesting from the aspect of how the "other side" saw the war and their duty from the soldier's point of view. Read morePublished on 18 Oct. 2013 by JohnSK
I read this book when I was still at school in the 50s. Now at almost 70, I have enjoyed it once morePublished on 13 May 2013 by Coyote
A very enjoyable book, always interesting to learn about the view from 'the other side'
Although a proud German, the author was no Nazi.. Read more
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