Wednesday, February 16, 2011
One Man's War
Title: One Man's War
Author: Stuart E. Soward
I picked up this short book after hearing that the author died in January and that the subject of the book, Richard Bartlett, passed away in December. Dick Bartlett was a farm boy from Saskatchewan who joined the Fleet Air Arm and flew Skuas off the HMS Ark Royal. The book focuses mostly on the ill-conceived attack by the Skuas on the German battleship Scharnhorst in a Norway fjord, and Mr. Bartlett's time as a Prisoner of War after being shot down in that attack. Both sections are eye opening. It is hard to believe a human could survive some of the treatment he received at the hands of the Germans, and that the FAA leadership could have held out any belief that the Scharnhosrt attack was anything but a suicide mission. Mr. Bartlett's will and tenacity to survive both the raid, and his time as a POW, are impressive. The book is a quick, breezy, and interesting read and well worth the time for the Canadian aviation fan and/or students of the Fleet Air Arm.
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Dick was my Dad's uncle.
I loved the book and it made me proud. I have lent it to many friends and coworkers and everybody's response has been amazement. A fascinating story!
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