In the summer of 1940, the Battle of Britain rages in the skies over southern England. Nineteen-year-old Pilot Officer Peter Stuyckes arrives at RAF Westhill and is immediately put to the test. Based on the author’s own service as an RAF Flight Engineer,Squadron Airborne takes place over one unforgettable week that summer, depicting with intensity and brilliance the work of the many ground-crew and other staff as they support the Few in their fight against the Luftwaffe. The novel is published to commemorate the 80th anniversary of the Battle of Britain in September 2020.
Squadron Airborne is the story of the Battle Of Britain in 1940 and the people that took part in the air and on the ground.
Written shortly after the war, it uses the language of the time which gives this book its immense sense of realism, atmosphere and time and place.
There are also the precise details of the air battles, the planes and the time spent on the ground, it’s here the ground crew, responsible for keeping these planes flying, get the recognition they deserve.
There are some poignant moments and some humour too. A must read for anyone who enjoys reading of the history of WWII.
Thank you to Random Things Tours for the opportunity to be part of this blog tour, for the promotional material and an ARC of Squadron Airborne.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Elleston Trevor (Trevor Dudley-Smith) was a prolific author who wrote under several pseudonyms, publishing over 100 books in his lifetime. He is perhaps best known for his Quiller series of spy novels and his 1964 novel The Flight of the Phoenix, which has been adapted into two Hollywood films.
The book takes the form of a journey through one English county a day. Rather than having a plan, other than a rough anticlockwise direction of travel, the trip was largely spontaneous. This unplanned nature is what drives the narrative, similar to the way a MacGuffin drives a story, and opens the possibility of stumbling across unintended experiences.
The journey is taken in a fifteen-year-old 4×4 referred to throughout as The Truck, along with a sat nav referred to as Kathy (actually the voice of Kathy Clugston from Radio 4). Rather than paying for hotels this was a camping trip to keep the costs down. The logistics of finding somewhere to camp each night provided further challenges. All of these inconveniences, and the unexpected solutions that followed, provided useful metaphors for concepts that arose in the philosophical exploration.
The result of this unplanned approach is that the story only covers the areas of the counties passed through. There are no descriptions of the obvious locations in each county because the journey simply didn’t pass that way. However, this means that there were unplanned encounters with places such as a village falling into the sea, the wonderfully mad Tees Transporter Bridge, or accidentally driving a speedboat with two drunk blokes without any consideration about how to get ashore.
In Sat Nat We Trust Is the story of one man’s journey around the historic counties of the UK. He has the truck, his tent and his thoughts.
On the Journey there are many stories, anecdotes and random facts, with a few rants too. This is a little philosophical, about the differences in need and want, the rational and irrational, but really is just shows there are adventures to be had right on your doorstep,
A fun, interesting and thought provoking read.
Thank you to Random Things Tours for the opportunity to be part of this blog tour, for the promotional material and an eARC of In Sat Nav We Trust. This is my honest and unbiased review.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Jack Barrow is a writer of books and blogs about ideas based on popular philosophy in modern life. He is a critical thinker but not a pedant. He has an interest in spiritual perspectives having been brought up as both a Mormon and a Jehovah’s Witness. He’s not sure, but he believes this particular ecclesifringical upbringing makes him a member of a pretty exclusive club. He is also fascinated by science. At the same age as his parents were taking him to church services, he was also watching Horizon documentaries and Tomorrow’s World, becoming fascinated about science and technology. Perhaps around the time of the moon landings, when he was six or seven, he came to the conclusion that, sooner or later, people would realise that the sky was full of planets and stars, science explained the universe, and that there was no God looking down. He really thought that religion’s days were numbered. Declining congregations seemed to back that up, but since then there has been a growth in grass roots movements that seem to indicate people are looking for something to fill the void left by organised religion. He now has a particular interest in the way people are creating their own spiritual perspectives (whatever spiritual means) from the bottom up using ideas sourced from history, folkloric sources and imagination. Rather ironically it was members of the Jehovah’s Witnesses who first introduced him to the landscape of Wiltshire, with its stone circles and ancient monuments, which later kindled his interest in spiritual beliefs taken from more ancient perspectives.
He has also written a novel; The Hidden Masters and the Unspeakable Evil is a story of a group of magicians who discover a plot to build casinos in Blackpool and so turn the resort into a seedy, tacky, and depraved town. During this hard-drinking occult adventure, with gambling and frivolous trousers, Nigel, Wayne and Clint travel north on Friday night but they need to save the world by Sunday evening because they have to be back at work on Monday morning.
Jack lives in Hertfordshire, England, where he earns a living writing about things in engineering; this usually means photocopiers and bits of aeroplanes. He shares his home with R2D2 and C3PO, occasionally mentioned in his blog posts. People used to say he should get out more. At the time of writing he is currently shielding from the apocalypse, having been of a sickly disposition as a child, and wondering if he will be able to go to a live music pub ever again.