Werner's Reviews > Dave Dawson on the Russian Front

Dave Dawson on the Russian Front by R. Sidney Bowen
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's review
Jan 10, 09

bookshelves: adventure-fiction, action-heroines
Read in January, 1962

This book was apparently part of a series, although my school library had only this volume. Written as patriotic escape fiction during World War II, it features American pilot Dave Dawson and his British sidekick, Freddy Farmer, brave, two-fisted action heroes who apparently serve the Allied cause in a detached intelligence service capacity, pitted against Nazi villains. I don't remember the McGuffin that drove the plot of this particular book, but I do recall that it took them from England to the Russian front, and involved various combats, jeopardies and escapes (they're captured at least twice) in the air and on land. Although I read the book as a kid, I don't recall anything that suggests it was written for children, and the violence and high body count would be more appropriate for adults. There was no bad language that I can remember, and no sex or romance --though while in Russia, they had the help of a beautiful comrade-in-arms, Senior Lieutenant Nasha Petrovsky, who would have made a worthy Mrs. Dawson!

Bowen's view of Stalin's Russia tends to be rather rose-tinted --colored, as I recognized even as a child, by the wartime alliance-- but the book was exciting reading. It's not intellectually deep, and its simple good vs. evil message and celebration of "masculine" virtues (which are actually just unisex virtues) aren't particularly subtle; but they don't have to be. IMO, the heroes would probably appeal to any fan of the action-adventure pulps of the period.
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