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B for Buster

3.54  ·  Rating Details ·  157 Ratings  ·  25 Reviews
Nicknamed after his hometown of Kakabeka, Canada, Kak dreams of flying with the Allied bombers in World War II. So at 16, underage and desperate to escape his abusive parents, he enlists in the Canadian Air Force. Soon he is trained as a wireless operator and sent to a squadron in England, where he’s unabashedly gung ho about flying his first op. He thinks the night ops ov ...more
Mass Market Paperback, 336 pages
Published December 18th 2007 by Laurel Leaf (first published 2004)
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Richie Partington
Jul 15, 2013 Richie Partington rated it it was amazing
12 July 2004 B FOR BUSTER by Iain Lawrence, Random House/Delacorte, June 2004, ISBN: 0-385-73086-1; ISBN Library: 0-385-90108-9

"In an upstairs room in Blackpool
By the side of a northern sea
The army had my father
And my mother was having me
Military madness was killing my country
Solitary sadness comes over me"
--Graham Nash "Military Madness"

As someone who couldn't kill another person for any reason, and who cannot condone governmental-sanctioned killing of any kind, World War II is an extremely com
Oct 15, 2013 ♥†♬პოἶlყ♬†♥ rated it really liked it
Shelves: for-school
It was a good book, nothing more, nothing less.
Michele Karmartsang
Jan 04, 2016 Michele Karmartsang rated it really liked it
Read aloud to the boys. Solid story, real characters, doesn't gloss over the emotions of war.
Feb 14, 2017 Tony rated it it was amazing
Tony L.
Bombs Away
Bombers have been used in warfare since the great WW1, and have been used and improved upon ever since, but they have just not appeared in real wars. They have been shown in movies and added in many war books, but have you ever read a book or seen a movie where they put you in the shoes of an operator in the belly of the gigantic beast?
I have read many war books and they are the only book genre I read, so I am quite critical for them, and since WW2 books are probably the most
Chandler McEwen
Feb 02, 2016 Chandler McEwen rated it really liked it
"B for Buster" was a semi entertaining book for me but I'm not much off a reader this book managed to get my attention and adrenalin pumping during the action scene but I found the rest of it quite boring and unentertaining.
B for buster is about a kid named Kak who is one of the under aged solders that signed up for the army or air force in this case. Kak not having much of a good life at home joined the air force before the eligible age and was sent to Britain to fly. When Kak arrives at an ai
Ben Brenneman
Feb 27, 2011 Ben Brenneman rated it it was amazing
In B for Buster a kid everyone refers to as "the kid" or "kak" since he is from Kakabeka Canada is very desperate to get away from his horrid family consisting of an always intoxicated dad and a non-caring mom. So Kak decides at the age of 16 to enlist in the air force of World War II. Little does he know that the war is not a thing he was dreaming of, it is much worse. Kak is sent to Europe to fight with the allied forces and is set as a wireless operator and is placed with a crew he comes to l ...more
Sep 30, 2009 Sarah rated it it was ok
Shelves: young-adult
Another one that I read for Abe with high hopes because I think we need a war novel on the list. But I didn't like this one. Kak runs away from his drunk father at the age of 16 to join the Royal Air Force. He works as a wireless operator in the belly of bombers and also takes care of the pigeon that was on every flight. Strange, huh. Homing pigeons were used to carry messages back to base if something happened to the aircraft. Usually if the bird came back on its own, the plane and its crew did ...more
Mar 17, 2008 Laura rated it it was ok
Shelves: young-adult
I think this is more of a guy's book because I didn't really care all that much for it. It was mostly about war and pigeons and people's views on the value of life. I felt like it had a pretty good message, but it was kind of drowned out by all the "war" talk and suspense. You really wanted to know what happened next, but as soon as you were don with the book you didn't think it was all that remarkable.

*This was written after I read the book - Teen's Top Ten review in 2005.
It was okay. I just di
Jori Richardson
Nov 24, 2012 Jori Richardson rated it liked it
During World War II, 16 year old Kak steals his older brother's identity in order to enlist as an Air Force Bomber.
I loved Iain Lawrence's writing. I have a few of his other books, most notably "The Wreckers" and its sequels, and loved them. Lawrence is great at writing tense action scenes and keeping a book moving.
However, the writing style was the only thing I could enjoy about this story. I strongly disliked all of the characters. They never seemed all that well written or realistic, and the
Oct 18, 2010 Jack23 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 1st-term-reading
B for Buster is a great book it has lots of interesting details and cool subjects. Its also gets scary at some points. Its about a boy who is only 16 that joins the military. He flies in a bomber plane and goes on special ops to attack different places in germany and what not. Its a sad book too the boy watches lots of his friends go down in horrible plane crashes. I really enjoyed this book and I liked the fact that he was to young to do something but he still did it. The book sends a really go ...more
Frances Ann
Aug 04, 2014 Frances Ann rated it really liked it
There's a lot of literature about the American bombing squads of WWII, but not so much about the RAF, especially in the young adult section. This book has been on my shelf for years, but I haven't picked it up until now and frankly I don't know what stopped me. While still bearing a fictional narrative plot it still captures some of the horrible realities of these young men endured. It is very well researched and incredibully personal. I fear that this book may be out of print, but there may sti ...more
Emily Ann
I thought this was a great book. I liked how the main character was portrayed, the description said he was a sixteen year old and the writer made him a sixteen year old. Kak is a naive sixteen year old who joins the army to get away from his alcoholic father. He joins the bombing force excited and ready but after his first opp nothings the same.

I liked how it was written. The bombing scenes and the descriptions of the burning cities were intense.

Some swearing but nothing too bad and not too gra
Oct 08, 2010 Jodi rated it really liked it
This is a great book taking place during World War 2 (Spring of '43). B for Buster is the name of an old Halifax MK1 - bomber plane. Kakabeka (the main characterk's nickname) is an under aged recruiter, who takes you into the life of a sprog (slang for inexperienced aircrew) or known as a Wireless Operator.
Melissa Mahle
May 03, 2013 Melissa Mahle rated it it was amazing
Shelves: ya
I give this book 6 stars. I was captured by the voice and plot from the first chapter. And the ending, OMG! This is a war time story that does not glorify war or sacrifice, but puts a very true feeling on what it means to be a young man serving in combat. Lawrence is a master! I intend to read every book he has written.
Mar 17, 2015 Harriette rated it liked it
This book held my attention despite some of the criticisms that have been leveled against it: no named female characters and profanity used by its characters. The parallel development of Bert, the pigeoneer, and Kak, the underage boy who enlisted in the war, is well done. The historical elements were authentically presented.
TheIron Paw
Sep 15, 2011 TheIron Paw rated it really liked it
An excellent teen/young-adult novel providing a realistic portrayal of life and stresses in bomber command during the war (including the role of pigeons - which I never heard of before). Also an excellent story line of the struggles of an under-age crew member to come to grips with his fears. Where were all these great YA/Teen books when I was young?
Samantha Savage
Sep 18, 2012 Samantha Savage rated it did not like it
Okay so i didn't actually finish this book. i was supposed to read this for history class but i couldnt get through it so i switched to the book Animal Farm which in my opinion was much better. and after hearing a summary of the rest of this book, I am glad I didn't read it.
Jul 19, 2011 Jennifer rated it it was ok
Iain Lawrence's novels are so hard for me to get through. I wanted to give this one a chance, but I disliked it as much as his previous works. Some middle school boys might like this WWII fighter pilot story, but I found it monotonous.
May 30, 2013 Kooby rated it it was amazing
i thought the book was great one of my friends said it was boring, but to me it was stunning and at the end a little sad.
Aug 03, 2014 Maxwell rated it it was amazing
Julie Rand
Aug 12, 2012 Julie Rand rated it really liked it
Gave me a new appreciation for the Allied pilots (and my father-in-law) who flew over Germany during WWII. I enjoyed reading it and talking about it with my son.
May 22, 2012 Camille rated it really liked it
I recommend this book to all my WWII boys. Great story.
Oct 24, 2014 Danielteska rated it it was amazing
I cried so much I really did. I highly recommend it. Its a beautiful book and it captures the scene of the era and the feeling of the people who really did fly the bombers.
Jun 25, 2012 Jec rated it really liked it
a wonderful story which proves that you can read an excellent young adult book without a vampire in sight...check out this section of the library. this is one you should not miss.
Rosie rated it it was amazing
Nov 11, 2011
Grace rated it really liked it
Oct 07, 2016
Kate rated it really liked it
Jul 23, 2012
Eryn-marie rated it really liked it
Feb 10, 2009
Faith rated it it was ok
Jun 03, 2012
Denise M Higgins
Denise M Higgins rated it it was amazing
Oct 13, 2015
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