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I Sank The Bismarck Hardcover – 4 Jun 2009

4.6 out of 5 stars 26 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 304 pages
  • Publisher: Bantam Press; 1st Edition edition (4 Jun. 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 059306352X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0593063521
  • Product Dimensions: 15.9 x 3 x 24.1 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (26 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 522,427 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product description

Book Description

The memoirs of a Second World War bomber pilot.

From the Back Cover

May 1941, the pilots of fifteen canvas-covered biplanes struggled to hold their Swordfish aircraft steady as they aimed towards the German battleship Bismarck. They flew low over a wind-wracked ocean, aiming their torpedoes, totally vulnerable in their open cockpits. If they failed now Bismarck would escape to safety.

Among these brave flyers was a young Sub-Lieutenant in the Fleet Air Arm, John Moffat. Only years later was John told that it was his torpedo that had prevented the Bismarck from outrunning her Royal Navy pursuers.

I Sank the Bismarck is a personal story of a carefree young boy, raised in the Borders, growing up to join a fledgling Fleet Air Arm. It's the story of a young pilot, living for the moment, facing war, and taking part in one of the most important battles at sea ever fought by Britain and the Royal Navy. --This text refers to the Paperback edition.

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Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
My mother read this as an RNIB Talking Book and thoroughly enjoyed it, persuading me to buy a hard copy.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Let's get the title out of the way first; it's patently ludicrous. No individual, living or dead can make such a claim. After reading the book I'd be very surprised if it was the author who came up with it. It's only a guess, but I fancy that a lot of people will assume that a stupid title means that it's a stupid book. And that's a shame because nothing could be further from the truth; it's a very good book.
With that gripe out of the way let me say what a splendid read it is. It's packed with anecdotal and personal experiences of the naval war in the Mediterranean culminating (as the title suggests) in the north Atlantic with the Swordfish attacks on the Bismarck. But there is plenty to ponder on before we reach the Bismarck. It's packed with all the little details that won't be found in an historians account. Did you know that the Scharnhorst & Gneisenau were referred to as the Ugly Sisters by the Ark Royal's crew as they attempted to hunt them down? I just love things like that. Only first-hand accounts can flesh out history for subsequent generations and we should be grateful to those who have taken the trouble to record it. Anyone with an interest in military first-hand accounts will not find anything to complain about with this book.
Oh dear...before submitting this to the ether I took a look at the other reviews and could scarcely believe what I read. Some one has written...`could have been an excellent book with a little less self praise.' It's an incomprehensible comment as the author is self effacing in the extreme.
Here's to you Mr Moffat...we all owe you one!
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Format: Hardcover
This is simply a superb book, John Moffat and Mike Rossiter have written a fast moving, well written book which will appeal to all those interested in WWII history, maritime history and for the human story of the 1930's and 1940's.

This is one of the best books I have ever read, I found it totally gripping and really placed you at the point of time in the book.

Very highly recommended indeed!
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Format: Hardcover
I have heard John Moffat describe his attack on the Bismarck, he has a remarkable memory for a man of his age. A very good account of his life as a WW2 Fleet Air Arm pilot. Mike Rossiter writes with authority, this is a follow on from his book HMS Ark Royal. Both books are recommend buys for Naval Aviation historians.
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Format: Hardcover
The author makes it quite clear that he was not responsible for the sinking of the Bismark.The blame for the misleading title clearly is laid at the publishers door.What is clear is that he contributed vastly by managing to hit the Bismark with his torpedo,but no one can say where his torpedo hit.Nevertheless he did a singularly brave act for which he should have been decorated.I found his tale of life in the Fleet Air arm aboard carriers to be gripping.Given that unfortunately members of the authors generation are now slipping away fast generations to come will be very fortunate to have first hand accounts such as this to refer to.
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Format: Paperback
A very well written account of the memoirs of a very brave and compasionate man. It goes at a good pace and does not drag on on certain situations. I recommend this book to anyone even with just a casual interest in military history. What these people did for our freedom should never be forgotten.
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Format: Hardcover
A truly inspirational story of a young naval pilot in action during WW2.Down to earth account of how close to defeat Britain really came when battling a Germany who had been gearing for conflict since the early thirties.It is not an understatement that the torpedo fired into the Bismarck by the young Swordfish pilot, sub-lieutenant John Moffat spared the Atlantic convoys and perhaps saved Britain from starvation and inglorious surrender.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
John Moffat was not the pilot who fired the fatal shot the crippled but did not sink the mighty battleship Bismarck, so the title he chose was a lie. In fact he attacked her port side and did not secure a hit. The fatal torpedo was fired at her starboard side by one of two pilots, Kenneth Pattisson or David Godfrey-Faussett. The fatal torpedo entered her starboard steering compartment, exploding and jamming her starboard rudder against her central propellor with result that should only turn in circles. The Home Fleet then tried to finish her off and sink her with gunfire but to no avail and so with all her guns out of action, Bismarck's crew finally chose to scuttle her.
Moffat joined the Ark Royal aged 21 as the rookie pilot so played little part in her important missions, other than the Bismarck action, due to his inexperience. On joining he hadn't even done a deck landing.
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