Friday, 24 April 2009

The Traveller by John Twelve Hawks

This is a modern novel set in the very near future.

The premise of the story is that down through history there have ever been "travellers". These people have been able to cross over to other realms and then return. The returned travellers bring back new ideas and cause trouble and revelation. The book hints that Jesus himself may have been a traveller.

As well as travellers there have also been "Harlequins", these individuals dedicate themselves to protecting the travellers.

Set against them are the brotherhood. Another underground organisation that dedicates to establishing law and order, and eliminating the disruptive travellers.

Into this world the author sets his appealing characters who from the get go and born into action and adventure. I'm afraid to say too much lest I give away the plot!

One night this week I went to bed at 9, determined to get a much needed early night, only to find myself still reading at 10:30! It's that absorbing.

This is book one in a series and I'm looking forward to gettin my hands on the next installment.

Wednesday, 15 April 2009

Bomber Boys by Patrick Bishop

This book is subtitled "Fighting Back 1940-1945" and that really gives the game away.

This is a non fiction historical presentation. The author takes a look at all aspects of the Allied Bomber forces during World War II.

He takes us from the Dunkirk campaign where the bombers were desperately out gunned , in pitiful machines and sufffered terribly, right through to the end of the war.

I found this book a real pleasure to read from end to end. It's not some dry series of facts but the details are presented in a very readable humane way. The experiences of the lads flying the bombers are always at the fore in the text, so if the author is explaining some abstract political motivation it's done through the effects it had on the crews with anecdate and memoir.

I found myself enlightened about a number of things relating to the Bomber forces. For instance how the design of the aircraft might cost crew their lives when bailing out, or how ineffective the machine guns in the turrets were. I was astounded to learn that the crew were being encouraged to use amphetamines when flying.

The book does not shy away from the horror that the Bombers wrought on the ground, especially in the area-bombing of cities. It also highlights how the Bomber crews were forgotten after the war, or rather, sweapt under the carpet by an embarrased officialdom.

An excellent and well written book.