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Little Cyclone

3.73  ·  Rating details ·  108 ratings  ·  22 reviews
The exhilarating true story of the greatest escape route of the Second World War On a hot afternoon in August 1941, a 24-year-old Belgian woman walks into the British consulate in Bilbao, neutral Spain, and demands to see the consul. She presents him with a British soldier she has smuggled all the way from Brussels, through Occupied France and over the Pyrenees. It is a jo ...more
Kindle Edition, 256 pages
Published February 2nd 2016 by Biteback Publishing
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3.73  · 
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 ·  108 ratings  ·  22 reviews

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Oct 08, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
You never need “historic fiction” when there are real stories like this around. Anyone interested in the war must must must read this book about the amazing and heroic women and men who formed underground routes to save downed airmen over Europe and lead them through safe houses, mountains, and different countries and brutal terrain and hostile natives and freedom and a return to England where most would sign on again. I read stories like this and am Ashamed of our own whining and com ...more
Andrée “Dédée” De Jongh, served as inspiration for the novel The Nightingale. She and her father stealthily created the Comet Line, an escape route to help allied soldiers/airmen get out of Belgium, through occupied France, into Spain, and back home. She and her numerous helpers eventually worked with British intelligence, including Airey Neave, who penned this book. It’s a bit dry, and there are a ton of people to keep straight, but it’s a fascinating story.
Cynthia (Bingeing On Books)
Dec 08, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: nonfiction
This girl is my hero. Truly. I first heard about Andree in Kristin Hannah's book, The Nightingale. In her author's note, she stated that the main character was loosely based on Andree de Jongh and I instantly wanted to know more. It was amazing just how many airmen that these people managed to save from the Nazis. It wasn't just Andree, although she was the brains behind the operation (girl power!). There were so many people involved and the author did an incredible job of building suspense. Som ...more
Oct 14, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Amazing! I'm already very proud to be a Basque-American but this book just makes the love stronger. The men & women who saved our American & British downed airman during WW2 & found them safe houses & safety. His them from the Nazis to much peril of their own lives and extended families. If you are a lover of history, this story is a must read and one that IMO doesn't ever get enough notice. I had read Kristin Hannahs Nightingale which was an ode to this true life account story, ...more
Joanne Hemming
Dec 23, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
An amazing story of such bravery of this young woman 'DeeDee' and all her aides who helped DeeDee to set up this safe passage The 'Comet Line' from German controlled Belgium and France all the way down to spain to get British, American and other allies of the second world war to the safety of Britain. It was a marvellous read of such courage, strong will and determination along with such compassion. They encounter so many dangers of capture and betrayal. There was many times I couldn't breathe w ...more
Richard Damsell
Apr 02, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: april-2013
Such incredible bravery and sacrifice. But what a fantastic morale booster when "presumed dead" airmen returned.
Dec 02, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
First off, this book was written in 1954 after WWII by Airey Neave who was with the "Little Cyclone" during her time running the Comet Line through Belgium, France, and into Spain. Neave was an intelligence agent during the war and later became a Member of Parliament. He died in 1979 in an IRA a car-bomb attack at the House of Commons.

The book is a quick read and very interesting. I keep finding that there is so much about this war that I do not know about. This story is one example. A young 24-
Sheri S.
I enjoyed reading about Andree de Jongh, the real life woman upon whom the main character of the Nightingale is based. Andree de Jongh, known as Dedee, begins the Comet Line to safely pass Allied soldiers from Occupied France to Spain. She is a daring and inspiring individual who continually put herself at risk. Many brave people worked alongside Dedee to save the lives of hundreds of Allied airmen and soldiers. I am glad that the efforts and sacrifices of such courageous people are being recogn ...more
The story of Andrée de Jongh is fascinating and the courage of those who ran the comet line is inspiring. I wish the book was more well-written. I found it difficult to follow at times. I was expecting more of a biography of de Jongh; however this book was more of a story of the comet line itself. The author strives to tell the stories of the most important contributors to the effort. At times, it is difficult to keep track of who’s who. In spite of this, I’m glad I read the book, because it gav ...more
Dec 28, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Courageous men and women who saved many

I typically enjoyed this book. I read every name at the end to keep alive their sacrifice for many men must read
Sep 23, 2018 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I enjoyed The Freedom Line better but this was good too.
May 12, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Non fictional, but well worth.
The title suggests that this is a biography of the woman who set up the Comet Line from Belgium to Spain, helping Allied airmen escape Occupied Europe. It isn't. It's more the story of the Line itself. Dedee de Jongh, the Little Cyclone herself, appears in the first part of the book and was obviously a hugely inspirational person to her colleagues. However, the book also talks about her fellow resistance fighters, people who followed in her footsteps, courting danger during the darkest days of t ...more
Aug 05, 2013 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Andree De Jongh was a young Belgian artist in her twenties, when the Germans invaded Brussels in 1940. Moved to help wounded Allied serviceman return to the UK, she helped to move them through Belgium, across France and the Pyrenees into Spain. With the help of the British consulate, she was able to assist in the escape of 800 soldiers and airmen.

This also came at an incredible cost to those who helped out, with one hundred and fifty six members of the Comet Line being killed, the majority at co
Paul Narloch
Oct 11, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A pleasure reading about the dogged determination of one so young and focussed. If any book should be used on curriculum's as a means to inspire.. this is a contender. Andree De Jongh requires a star named after her.
3.7 stars.
This book is for anyone who has read and loved The Nightingale by Kristen Hannah. The real life WWll heroine, Andree De Jongh, was a her inspiration for Hannah's Isabelle character. This brave young lady was the one who set up the Comet Line that ended up saving 800 allied lives and got these young men back in the war and up in the air to continue the fight against the Nazis. Hundreds of brave men, women and children helped Andree along the Comet Line. This book tells many of their st
Mar 05, 2011 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: non-fiction, history
The subject matter is really interesting - the French resistance during WWII is a gripping story of courage, revenge and survival (in particular the setting up and running of the Comet Line, a escape route for airmen shot down in France and Belgium) - but Neave's prose is dry and rather monochromatic and it was this that made it something of a let-down.
Jun 16, 2013 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Great story, but poorly written. Too much invention around the character, temperament and imagined emotions of the people involved. Made it feel more like a story and therefore took away from the impact of what these people actually did and achieved.
It's a great true story, which is very compelling. However, I don't think the book itself was a very captivating telling of it.
Jul 01, 2015 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: oorlog
Te veel namen, te weinig beschrijving rond het hoofdpersonage, ... Niet echt mijn ding.
A beautiful story told with absolutely no narrative grace, the story of Dédée is enchanting.
Dec 30, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I read this book as a result of reading Nightingale, by Kristin Hannah. Would recommend!
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Lt. Colonel Airey Middleton Sheffield Neave, OBE, DSO, MC, TD (23 January 1916 – 30 March 1979) was a British army officer, barrister, politician, and author.

During World War II, Neave was the first British officer to successfully escape from the German prisoner-of-war camp Oflag IV-C at Colditz Castle. For his wartime service, in 1948 the United States conferred the Bronze Star Medal upon him. He
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