Author(s): Robert Radcliffe
1943. The sleepy Suffolk village of Bedenham is jerked into the twentieth century and the harsh realities of war by the arrival on its doorstep of an American bomber base and its three thousand inhabitants. For Billy Street, fourteen, a London evacuee uneasily billeted with the village blacksmith, the American invasion is heaven sent - unlimited opportunities and acceptance at last within a community he loves. Yet a concealed past threatens his new happiness. Billy's schoolteacher, Heather Garrett, awaits word of a husband missing for eighteen months. A stranger to Bedenham, Heather's sense of isolation - and village suspicions - are heightened when troubled American pilot John Hooper, reaches for her friendship. And daily the skies fill with the bombers and their ten-man crews who, during that bleak autumn of 1943, suffered losses on a catastrophic scale. For Hooper, tormented by earlier loss, leading Misbehavin' Martha and her disorderly crew safely through their 25 designated bombing missions becomes a personal crusade.
'A novel of action, engaging, authentic, irresistibly readable & enriched with romance. Wonderful storytelling. Radcliffe is the new Faulks' Michael Holroyd 'As vivid a recreation of the Second World War as I have read . Radcliffe is not just a born storyteller but one of those generous writers who look for the best in human nature ... This marvellous feel-good debut will bring a glow to the most jaded cheeks', DAILY TEL. 'You will thoroughly enjoy it', D. EXPRESS
Robert Radcliffe lives in Suffolk and is himself an experienced pilot. He has written two other novels, published under a different name.