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Facing Fearful Odds (Hardback)

My Father's Story of Captivity, Escape & Resistance 1940-1945

WWII Prisoners Of War

By John Jay
Imprint: Pen & Sword Military
Pages: 298
ISBN: 9781473827349
Published: 14th October 2014

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£25.00


National publicity

As seen in the Daily Mail (February 2018); Author reveals bravery of his soldier father whose garrison 'fought to the last man' to hold back the Nazis, read the article online here

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On 22 May 1940 Alec Jay arrived in Calais with his Battalion, the Queen Victoria Rifles. After four days of intense fighting, he was taken prisoner of war along with those of his colleagues who were not killed. The Calais Garrison was not evacuated.
His situation as a POW was exceptionally perilous as he was a Jew. Made to wear distinctive clothing, he was all too aware of the Nazis' determination to eradicate his race. Undeterred he made five escape attempts as well as leading a successful protest strike, one of the few during the War.

When he finally escaped, he teamed up with Czech partisans and fought alongside them during the closing stages of the War.

John Jay, a distinguished journalist and Investment manager, has reconstructed his father's war using the archive material from four countries and numerous other sources and POW accounts. The result is a fascinating and inspiring story.

As featured in

Daily Mail 3/2/18

A fascinating account of life in a prisoner of war camp, a tale of endurance and courage this book is a labour of love for author John Jay who has produced a thrilling account of his father Alec's wartime experiences.

Daily Express

This is a wonderful book about a rather unique man. A Rifleman, a POW, an escaper, and eventually a Parisian. Buy it, read it.

Army Rumour Service

John Jay, a distinguished journalist and investment manager, has reconstructed his father's war using the archive material from four countries and numerous other sources and POW accounts. The result is a fascinating and inspiring story.

Pennant

A testament to filial love.
If Alec Jay was struck dumb by his suffering and survivor guilt, John Jay has given him a voice - forged from an impressive array of sources. This work of love has produced a very moving book, which takes us to the heart of darkness where so many men like Alec had to dwell, that we might live.

The Jewish Chronicle

A well written book. The most moving part is the epilogue, where the author discusses a father always beyond his reach.

Times Literary Supplement

A vivid and engaging description of [John Jay's] father's war experience.

Hampstead & Highgate Express

This is one WWII study that is part of a growing trend with sons writing their fathers' stories. ... The result is a book that tells a little told part of the war in Europe, but not an unusual story. There is humour and courage, comradeship, determination, danger and eventual triumph. It is the type of story writers of fiction are keen to plot and enthral. The writing style flows and holds the attention. The story is inspiring and will be much enjoyed by a broad readership. ... An inspiring and compelling story.

Firetrench

There have been many book written about fathers by sons, but this one is rather special.
This is an excellent book which I really do recommend Riflemen to read.

The Rifles Chronicle
 John Jay
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