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A Thousand Shall Fall: The True Story of a Canadian Bomber Pilot in World War Two
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A Thousand Shall Fall: The True Story of a Canadian Bomber Pilot in World War Two

4.5 of 5 stars 4.50  ·  rating details  ·  44 ratings  ·  8 reviews
During World War II, Canada trained tens of thousands of airmen under the British Commonwealth Air Training Plan. Those selected for Bomber Command operations went on to rain devastation upon the Third Reich in the great air battles over Europe, but their losses were high. German fighters and anti-aircraft guns took a terrifying toll. The chances of surviving a tour of dut ...more
Paperback, 490 pages
Published April 1st 2003 by Dundurn (first published January 1st 1992)
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Allan
Murray Peden beat the odds and survived his first tour as an Allied bomber pilot over the skies of war-torn Europe. His heart-felt account sees him transformed from high school graduate in Manitoba to skipper of a massive 71,000 lb. Short Sterling whose cockpit sits some 22 ft. above the runway. Peden is generous to both friends and enemies and as a consequence his story is gripping in its authenticity and humanity. As he recounts the toll of war the reader is swept along on his journey and is a ...more
Relstuart
One of the best memiors I've read about the European bombing campaign. And one of the few I've read from the RAF night bombing perspective. Peaden walks you through the whole training program he went through in Canada with his classmates. How he worked hard to get into fighters and how some of his classmates worked hard but didn't make the cut as pilots or due to mistakes by themselves or others did not survive training.

He talks about the personal side of his life, who he dated, learning to enj
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Malcolm
This is perhaps the best memoir of WW II I have ever read. It is the story of Murray Peden, a boy from Winnipeg, who became a pilot in RCAF 214 Squadron, and was awarded the DSM by King George.

The book describes the training of our pilots from ground zero, relates the stories of many of the pilots who lived and died, daily life in the Squadron. He takes us on each and every of his 27 bombing missions.

Peden is a terrific writer who also includes some funny things as well such as elaborate and si
...more
Marc Stevens
Although it was written in the 1970's, Murray Peden's masterwork succeeds and survives to this day by giving us youngsters an insider's look at life as a front line WW2 bomber pilot.

Peden's book is so personal that you will shed many tears while reading it. When friends are lost, they are your own friends, from school or work or social circles. And when Peden's wry sense of humour shines through, you will laugh out loud at the crazy antics.

Books written this well are rare. Books written this wel
...more
Norman
Haven't read a war memoire / personal recollection so vivid for years. The descriptions of basic training - learning to fly in a Tiger Moth ( I flew in one recently as a birthday pressie) are just terrifying. The book is leavened with the authors brilliant sense of humour and a lovely honest easy style of writing that made it unputdownable. A classic tale of the Bomber Command campaign against Nazi Germany and an all round great read to boot.
Shannon Cole
3.5 stars - I found the beginning dragged, but it was important stuff to cover. The interest level increased as he gets operational. Admire this mans accomplishments - a worthy read for people interested in the bomber command
Converse
1st printed in 1979. A well-written memoir of a Canadian who becaome a pilot in RAF Bomber command, part of the time spent in Squadron 214 of Group 100, the electronic countermeasures unit
Michael Evans
Great book. Hard to imagine what it would be like to fly bomber missions over Germany during the war, but Peden does a great job.
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