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  • ISBN: 9780241505373
  • Pages: 336
  • Publisher: Penguin
  • Binding: Paperback


The True Story of the Battle of Britain

Len Deighton

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‘Revolutionised thinking about the Battle of Britain in a way that has not been seriously challenged since.’ The Times

History is swamped by patriotic myths about the aerial combat fought between the RAF and the Luftwaffe over the summer of 1940. In his gripping history, Fighter: The True Story of the Battle of Britain, Len Deighton draws on a decade of research and his own wartime experiences to puncture these myths and point towards a more objective, and even more inspiring, truth.

Len Deighton’s skill as a novelist is used to show how the human factor influenced every twist and turn of this close-fought battle. His encyclopaedic knowledge of technology makes clear how machines played a vital role in the fight for Britain’s survival. Fighter tells the story of the men who developed radar, designed the high-speed monoplanes, fought each other in the skies and those who simply engaged in vicious vendetta.

‘The best, most dispassionate story of the battle I have read and I say that even though the book destroyed many of my illusions and, indeed, attacks the validity of some of what I wrote as an eyewitness.’ New York Times Book Review

You can read Richard Hillary’s story of the Battle of Britain in his own words in Slightly Foxed Edition No. 39: The Last Enemy.

Cogs in a Fighting Machine

While reading Len Deighton’s Bomber (1970), I was reminded of Solzhenitsyn’s line – ‘To do evil a human being must first of all believe that what he’s doing is good.’ Bomber is a novel...

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