July 18 , 2008

War Story


The first of three great Royal Flying Corps novels by Derek Robinson, War Story is the savagely funny and utterly convincing story of Hornet Squadron and - just eighteen and fresh from public school - new recruit Oliver Paxton. To his C.O. he's an idiot, to everyone else - especially the tormenting Australian who shares his billet - a pompous idiot. This is 1916, the year of the Somme, giving Paxton precious little time to grow from innocent to veteran. As one reviewer said: 'The descriptions of patrolling and aerial combat are superlatively well done . . . Stronger stomachs will relish the whiff of battiness and brimstone.'

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