Title : The Escape Artists: A Band of Daredevil Pilots and the Greatest Prison Break of the Great War
Author: Neal Bascomb
Genre: Nonfiction History
In the winter trenches and flak-filled skies of World War I, soldiers and pilots alike might avoid death, only to find themselves imprisoned in Germany's archipelago of POW camps, often in abominable conditions. The most infamous was Holzminden, a land-locked Alcatraz of sorts that housed the most troublesome, escape-prone prisoners. Its commandant was a boorish, hate-filled tyrant named Karl Niemeyer who swore that none should ever leave.
Desperate to break out of "Hellminden" and return to the fight, a group of Allied prisoners led by ace pilot (and former Army sapper) David Gray hatch an elaborate escape plan. Their plot demands a risky feat of engineering as well as a bevy of disguises, forged documents, fake walls, and steely resolve. Once beyond the watch towers and round-the-clock patrols, Gray and almost a dozen of his half-starved fellow prisoners must then make a heroic 150 mile dash through enemy-occupied territory towards free Holland.
Drawing on never-before-seen memoirs and letters, Neal Bascomb brings this narrative to cinematic life, amid the twilight of the British Empire and the darkest, most savage hours of the fight against Germany. At turns tragic, funny, inspirational, and nail-biting suspenseful, this is the little-known story of the biggest POW breakout of the Great War.
Would I recommended? Yes, but only to the ones that are in to this type of history
Would I read more by this author? It would depended on the type of book.
For those who know me I'ma big reader when it comes to nonfiction especially about WW 2 ,but for some unknown reason I've only picked up handful of books about WW 1 and I'm so glad I give this one a chance. Because the author did an amazing job doing his researched account of escape attempts (both successful and unsuccessful) by British soldiers doing this time, I can't believe that it took me this long to pick it up and read it. The characters come to life and you can literally feel what they went though before and after they was caught, how they never lost the their well to fight no matter hard it got,so with that said I want to thank the publisher as well as NetGalley for letting me read review the book.