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Lost Wings of WWI (Hardback)

Downed Airmen on the Western Front 1914 -1918

WWI World War One Aviation 1914 1915 1916 1917 1918 Great War POWs

By Martin Bowman
Imprint: Pen & Sword Aviation
Pages: 236
ISBN: 9781783831951
Published: 26th June 2014

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This new publication from eminent military historian Martin Bowman chronicles the stories of airmen downed on the Western Front between 1914 and 1918, representing a contribution on the author's part to the 100th anniversary of the Great War. It's speciality focus makes for a truly unique compendium of visceral First World War accounts of the incredible, bloody, aerial battles flown by the RFC, German, American, British and Commonwealth pilots shot down over the Western Front, also including stories of their escapes and lives in PoW camps. Whilst the predominant focus is on the airmen who saw action during the Great War, the author also provides startling tales of female heroism. There is a full chapter dedicated to the life and death of Norfolk heroine, Edith Cavell, a Norwich-born nurse who saved the lives of hundreds of soldiers from both sides during the conflict, and perished in the endeavour.

Amongst the famous pilots covered are; VCs Billy Bishop and Freddie West; Dice-with-Death Dallas; Mannock – The King of the Fighter Aces and Frank Luke the Balloon Buster. This book contains vivid accounts of some of the most heroic actions in the history of aerial warfare, all taking place within the brutal four year stretch of the Great War.

This work by the prolific aviation historian Martin W Bowman covers the careers of many men of the Royal Flying Corps who were forced to land or crashed in such a way that they became prisoners of war. The book gives excellent detail on the careers and events that led to the capture of these airmen and it also describes the setting in which prisoners of war found themselves. The book is a delightful mixture of stories about famous names and Bowman manages to make the stories come alive with well researched and interesting snippets many of which I had never heard before.

Overall this is a book that I thoroughly enjoyed as it gave those little extra bits of information about what took place in the air and on the ground during the Great War. It reveals the true grit and determination these men had. They may have failed to escape once but there was always a second chance and they would take it, irrespective of the odds being stacked against them every time.

Martin Bowman continues to show he is a professional author who spends time researching, checking and verifying his facts. I would consider this would make an excellent gift for anyone who has an interest in these events in the air and on the ground.

Western Front Association, reviewed by Peter Garwood

Lost wings contains vivid accounts of some of the most heroic actions in the history of aerial warfare, all taking place within the brutal four-year stretch of the Great War.

Royal Air Force News

No enthusiast's library of WWI or aviation histories will be complete without a copy of this book.

Firetrench

About Martin Bowman

Martin Bowman is one of Britain’s foremost aviation historians and has written many books and articles.

He lives in Norwich .

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