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The Last British Dambuster: One man's extraordinary life and the raid that changed history Hardcover – 8 May 2014

4.8 out of 5 stars 140 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Ebury Press (8 May 2014)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0091957745
  • ISBN-13: 978-0091957742
  • Product Dimensions: 15.2 x 3.2 x 22.9 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (140 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 221,874 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

Review

"A wonderful read" (Huw Edwards, BBC News)

"His descriptions take wing and become lyrical" (The Times)

"An evocative reminiscence of a bygone era" (The Express)

Book Description

The remarkable recollections of George 'Johnny' Johnson, Britain's last surviving Dambuster

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
The book I was waiting for. The book of George Johnny Johnson.

I can only say meeting the legend a few times makes this book even more special and my signed copy has pride of place on my book case.

The book puts right some wrongs and gives an in depth story of this great man. It is not an ego trip and covers everything I feel I need to know. I have many books on 617 SQN and the Dambusters and this sits with my favourite ones.

Buy a copy and read about the legend that is our last surviving dambuster
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Format: Hardcover
Awaited this book with some trepidation as some previous life stories of this kind can be hard going. NOT this one!
The book covers Johnny s whole story and is cleverly interspersed with part or whole chapters about his wartime career, keeping the reader on board. Some of these such as the description of boarding a Lancaster are top notch and really put you there .The thoughts of these young men are really well put across, with no false bravado. It is easy to forget or not think about, that these aeroplanes were cutting edge technology, especially to young men from average untravelled backgrounds and must have been a revelation. Johnny puts this over wonderfully. His descriptions of the take off in a Lancaster and his thoughts about it are revealing and show that just being in these aircraft was mind blowing for many of these young men. Pure adventure I guess.
So if you re interested in the Dambusters, or if like me you ve been lucky enough to meet Johnny, which brings it even more to life, then this is highly recommended.
Lastly , I think the general descriptive parts about the Lancaster, its operation and what individual crew members did and thought is a whole level up from most books of this kind and is recommended to anyone who wants to know what it was like.Thank you Johnny for this excellent book.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This is without doubt one of the best life stories I've read. It is not simply a war story but a true history of one of WW II's great incidents recounted by a participant in an impressive matter of fact manner. The description of the raid made me feel that I was with him, coming in over the church spire concentrating on the moment of bomb release on the dam before turning sharply to have yet another go to get the time of release exactly right.
However, this isn't just a war story, but a life story of a lad who dealt with a loveless upbringing and was saved by a caring primary school teacher and a secondary school which guided him through adolescence and set him on the right course for the rest of his life. Lord Wandsworth College should be proud of the support that they gave to him at a critical time of his life.
My congratulations too to his son who wrote this so successfully in his father's words.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
WHAT A WONDERFUL STORY, ITS TOLD IN A WAY THAT I`M SURE ANY BODY WOULD APPRECIATE. ALL THE DETAILS OF FLYING IN CONDITIONS THAT ONE COULD NEVER IMAGINE. ITS TOLD IN DETAIL ABOUT THE CRUEL CONDITIONS IN HIS EARLY LIFE WITHOUT RANCOUR. THE ENTIRE COMPOSITION KEPT ME SO ABSORBED THAT IT WAS, AT TIMES HARD TO LEAVE. WHAT A WONDERFUL MAN WHO HAS BEEN SUCH AN INSPIRATION TO SO MANY PEOPLE.
I NOW HAVE 2 GRANDSONS WHO ARE KEEN TO READ IT. PROOF THAT THE YOUNGER GENERATION STILL WANT TO INDULGE IN THE HISTORY OF THE WAR YEARS.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
OH! Just buy it! This is a remarkable story which is so well written and absolutely bursting with detail. What an inspirational fellow the author is. He is the epitome of what is good in this world and what was so prevalent amongst the young men in the services during the war.

I couldn't put this book down and felt so privileged to have been allowed to share in his experiences. What a life and what a man!

Without detracting from this book, which I urge you to buy, I would also recommend another book written by a similarly remarkable character namely Captain Eric " Winkle" Brown. Here is a man also with a wonderful tale to tell of an extraordinary life. His book is called "Wings on my Sleeve".

Both these gentlemen are inspirational. If their stories had been used as a script for a film then you wouldn't have believed it but their stories are true - not make-believe which makes them even more remarkable.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
If all history books were written like this as a first hand account then history would be a lot more interesting! Parts were very sad, but a well balanced account of the war from his view point and some interesting insight into life during the war for servicemen and their families. Our nation should be forever grateful.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
A good read. Tempered personally by much similar experience half a generation later by me as a National Service RAF Officer, RAF Chaplain, and former Scholarship boy of Lord Wandsworth College, which was still the same just post-war as it was pre-war for Johnny, albeit world of difference now two generations on.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
A book I could not put down. Having read almost all the volumes written on this famous raid and squadron, this book brings fitting closure to the Dambusters story - it is truly the 'icing on the cake'.
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