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Silver Wings, Iron Cross
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WW2 AUTHOR'S Q&A > Q&A with Tom Young, author of "Silver Wings, Iron Cross"

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message 1: by 'Aussie Rick', Moderator (last edited May 22, 2020 04:58PM) (new)

'Aussie Rick' (aussierick) | 17171 comments Please join in this weeks Q&A with Tom Young the author of the soon to be released novel; "Silver Wings, Iron Cross". The Q&A will run from Monday 25th May till Friday 29th May. His novel it to be released on Tuesday 26th May 2020.


message 2: by 'Aussie Rick', Moderator (new)

'Aussie Rick' (aussierick) | 17171 comments The Author:
Tom Young served in Afghanistan and Iraq with the Air National Guard. He has also also flown combat missions to Bosnia and Kosovo, and additional missions to Latin America, the horn of Africa, and the Far East. In all, Young has logged nearly five thousand hours as a flight engineer on the C-5 Galaxy and the C-130 Hercules, while flying to almost forty countries. Military honors include three Air Medals, three Aerial Achievement Medals, and the Air Force Combat Action Medal.

Young is the author of SILVER WINGS, IRON CROSS; THE HUNTERS; SAND AND FIRE; THE RENEGADES; SILENT ENEMY; and THE MULLAH'S STORM.

His nonfiction publications include THE SPEED OF HEAT: AN AIRLIFT WING AT WAR IN IRAQ AND AFGHANISTAN. His narrative, "Night Flight to Baghdad," appeared in the anthology OPERATION HOMECOMING: IRAQ, AFGHANISTAN, AND THE HOME FRONT IN THE WORDS OF U.S. TROOPS AND THEIR FAMILIES.

Silver Wings, Iron Cross by Tom Young Silver Wings, Iron Cross by Tom Young
Description:
From air combat veteran Tom Young comes the explosive saga of two enemy combatants--an American pilot and German U-boat officer --united by fate in an epic fight for survival . . .

World War II Lieutenant Karl Hagan earned his wings the hard way. But when his plane is shot down behind enemy lines, he's forced to make the hardest decision of his life: trusting the enemy.

Oberleutnant Wilhelm Albrecht wore his Iron Cross with pride. But when his U-boat is attacked in a devastating air raid, he abandons ship and finds an unlikely ally: the pilot who bombed him.

From the smoke-filled skies over Europe to the fire-blasted waters of a Nazi naval base to the battle-scarred German countryside, the American and the German must form an uneasy truce if they hope to survive. It is November of 1944. The tides of war have turned. Allies have taken back France, and German troops have retreated. But for Karl and Wilhelm, the war is far from over. Each must be prepared to lie for the other, fight for the other, or die with the other. But their short-lived alliance won't truly be put to the test until they reach the end of the line--inside a POW camp .

Thrillingly tense, blisteringly authentic, and emotionally powerful, Silver Wings, Iron Cross is an unforgettable novel of World War II that's sure to become a classic in the field.


message 3: by Tom (new) - added it

Tom Young | 16 comments My thanks to Aussie Rick for the opportunity to share thoughts with this group; it's quite an honor. I look forward to the Q&A. In the meantime, I'll kick things off by offering a look at the trailer for SILVER WINGS, IRON CROSS:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nV37x...


message 4: by 'Aussie Rick', Moderator (new)

'Aussie Rick' (aussierick) | 17171 comments Nice trailer Tom, good way to start the conversation. I am sure you will get a quite a few group members keen to ask you a few questions, best of luck.


message 5: by 'Aussie Rick', Moderator (new)

'Aussie Rick' (aussierick) | 17171 comments OK Tom, your first few questions;

1. - What inspired/motivated you to write this book?

2. - How much of your military career was a factor in helping to research and write your novel?


message 6: by Tom (new) - added it

Tom Young | 16 comments Thanks, Rick. Two great questions.

1) Many things inspired this book, but the most important was my grandfather. I grew up hearing his stories from World War II. He served in the legendary Eighth Air Force, as a mechanic on B-17s with the 94th Bomb Group. He spent most of the war at Rougham Field in East Anglia, and he was there through pretty much all of it--even the worst early days when losses were so horrific.

One of his stories involved marshaling an aircraft back into its hardstand at the end of a mission. It had fired flares during its approach, which signaled wounded aboard. When the airplane shut down, he noticed it was leaking fluid, and he wondered if it was oil or hydraulic fluid. As a mechanic, he thought: "What needs fixing?" Then he came closer and realized the plane wasn't leaking oil or hydraulic fluid. The airplane itself was dripping blood.

2) My own military service helped a great deal. You might say it was the second most important influence. I flew as a flight engineer on C-130s and C-5s. Of course, I never had to face anything as awful as the aerial combat of WWII. But I learned how an aircrew bonds and interacts. And I learned what it feels like when you see little lights coming up at the airplane, and you realize those lights are RPGs or AAA.


message 7: by Tom (new) - added it

Tom Young | 16 comments Since Rick asked about things that influenced this novel, I'll add one more: I've always been interested in the Battle of the Atlantic, which figures in the backstory of one of the novel's main characters.

That interest began was I was in college at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. As a member of the Scuba Club, I dived on several shipwrecks from WWII. You might say I immersed myself--quite literally--in the research. I put together a short video about that. Here's a link:

https://www.goodreads.com/videos/1629...


message 8: by 'Aussie Rick', Moderator (last edited May 26, 2020 05:19PM) (new)

'Aussie Rick' (aussierick) | 17171 comments Thanks for the response and the link to your video, very interesting indeed.

It seems you have travelled a bit for your research, did you end up anywhere surprising and did you at anytime come across something quite unexpected in your research?


message 9: by Tom (new) - added it

Tom Young | 16 comments Years ago, I visited Great Britain and found my grandfather's old airfield. Although I didn't realize it at the time, that trip became great background research for SILVER WINGS, IRON CROSS. When I was at Rougham Field, the base's remains were in bad shape. The old control tower was an abandoned building grown up in weeds. Locals told me an elderly woman had lived in the building, and she'd recently passed away. Since then, the base has become a museum site, and the tower has been restored to its wartime appearance. It certainly does my heart good to know the locals cared enough to restore that historic site. Here's a link for more information:
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rougham...


message 10: by 'Aussie Rick', Moderator (new)

'Aussie Rick' (aussierick) | 17171 comments The story of your grandfather about when he noticed the B-17 was leaking fluid; 'and he wondered if it was oil or hydraulic fluid. As a mechanic, he thought: "What needs fixing?" Then he came closer and realized the plane wasn't leaking oil or hydraulic fluid. The airplane itself was dripping blood.' - What a terrible image!

I take it you would have done a fair bit of reading on the subjects involved in your novel. Do you have any favourite books on the B-17, the Allied bombing campaign and the German U-boats and their campaign?


message 12: by Tom (new) - added it

Tom Young | 16 comments Liz V. wrote: "I wonder whether you are familiar with Nicholas A. Veronico's Bloody Skies: U.S. Eighth Air Force Battle Damage in World War II"

Hi, Liz. I haven't seen that one, but I need to put it on my list. Thanks for the suggestion.


message 13: by Tom (new) - added it

Tom Young | 16 comments 'Aussie Rick' wrote: "The story of your grandfather about when he noticed the B-17 was leaking fluid; 'and he wondered if it was oil or hydraulic fluid. As a mechanic, he thought: "What needs fixing?" Then he came close..."

Oh, yes. There are so many great books about the B-17 and the air war over Europe, but if I had to pick favorites, a couple come to mind. One is THE LUCKY BASTARD CLUB, by Eugene Fletcher. It's a great memoir by a B-17 pilot. Another is MASTERS OF THE AIR, by Donald D. Miller. It's a terrific nonfiction history. (And, as I understand it, that book is also the basis for the upcoming TV series, THE MIGHTY EIGHTH.)

The best book I've found about the U-boat campaign is IRON COFFINS, by Herbert Werner. Werner was a surviving U-boat commander who eventually moved to the United States. His memoir is a beautifully written account of the German side of the Battle of the Atlantic. He served a terrible cause, but he and his crews seem to have conducted themselves in accordance with the Laws of Armed Conflict.


message 14: by 'Aussie Rick', Moderator (new)

'Aussie Rick' (aussierick) | 17171 comments Some excellent books mentioned there Tom.

I understand your novel was official launched the other day, how did it go?


message 15: by Tom (new) - added it

Tom Young | 16 comments Pretty well, I think. Thanks for asking. I'm receiving a lot of good feedback on social media. In fact, I'm offering a small token of gratitude to all the folks who are enjoying SILVER WINGS, IRON CROSS. If you'd like to turn your copy into a signed copy, just shoot me an email at tyoungauthor@gmail.com, and I'll send you a free signed bookplate.


message 16: by Sean (new) - added it

Sean (varley_sean) | 8 comments Tom, want to say that I am in the middle of the Michael Parson & Sophia Gold Series and enjoyed each book so much! You are an excellent writer and I just got my copy of SILVER WINGS, IRON CROSS in the mail this afternoon. Needless to say, I am excited.

Do you have any plans to continue writing WWII thrillers?

Given your background flying modern jets (C-130s and C-5s) did you find it challenging to place yourself in the mindset of a B-17 pilot or a U-boat serviceman? Especially since your previous novels focused on modern warfare settings?


message 17: by Tom (new) - added it

Tom Young | 16 comments Hi, Sean. Many thanks for those kind words. I'm delighted that you're enjoying my novels. As it happens, I'm working on another World War II novel right now. The working title is THE MAGNIFICENT RESCUE, although the title may change between now and publication time. It's based on a real-life incident: Operation Halyard, in which USAAF C-47s rescued more than 500 downed airmen in Yugoslavia. With WWII technology, those crews pulled off something that would be difficult even now, with C-130s and night vision goggles.

Good question about placing myself in the mindset of a B-17 pilot. Though the technology is pretty different now, some things are the same--especially the way a crew bonds and communicates. Also, I found good resources on exactly how crews operated B-17s. There are lots of old WWII training films on YouTube, and those films are excellent. (They're as good as any training film I saw during my time in the military, except they're black-and-white instead of color.) Here's a link to one that was especially helpful:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Fdc8M...

For information on U-boat operations, my best source was a memoir written by a former U-boat commander: Iron Coffins: A Personal Account of the German U-boat Battles of World War II Iron Coffins A Personal Account of the German U-boat Battles of World War II by Herbert A. Werner


message 18: by Pamela (new) - added it

Pamela (goodreadscompamela_sampson) | 190 comments Hi Tom,
Very exciting that one of our members has become an author ! I hope to pick up a copy and put in a Goodreads review in the near future. It cannot be easy to launch a book amid a pandemic.
Best, Pam


message 19: by Sweetwilliam (new) - added it

Sweetwilliam | 566 comments I don't know Pam. He certainly will have a captive audience. Good luck with the book Tom. I'll put it on my list and try to get to it this summer.


message 20: by Tom (new) - added it

Tom Young | 16 comments Pamela wrote: "Hi Tom,
Very exciting that one of our members has become an author ! I hope to pick up a copy and put in a Goodreads review in the near future. It cannot be easy to launch a book amid a pandemic.
B..."


Thanks for the kind words, Pam. I certainly appreciate the support. Yes, launching a book during a pandemic is . . . different. You have to get creative with videos, blogs, etc. It definitely helps to be able to reach people through great pages like this one. All the best...


message 21: by Tom (new) - added it

Tom Young | 16 comments Sweetwilliam wrote: "I don't know Pam. He certainly will have a captive audience. Good luck with the book Tom. I'll put it on my list and try to get to it this summer."

Thanks for the support; I certainly appreciate it. I hope you enjoy the novel.


message 22: by Tom (new) - added it

Tom Young | 16 comments My thanks to Aussie Rick and everyone here for making this Q&A possible. It's a pleasure to chat with you folks. All the best...


message 23: by 'Aussie Rick', Moderator (new)

'Aussie Rick' (aussierick) | 17171 comments Thanks for taking the time to answer the questions posted by group members Tom and all the best with this novel and your future endeavours. Keep us all posted on how your novel goes, any reviews that come in please post in the relevant threads.


message 24: by Pamela (new) - added it

Pamela (goodreadscompamela_sampson) | 190 comments Sweetwilliam wrote: "I don't know Pam. He certainly will have a captive audience. Good luck with the book Tom. I'll put it on my list and try to get to it this summer."

You are right, Sweetwilliam ... I'm (happily) anticipating a lot of reading time this summer as are many others


message 25: by Tom (new) - added it

Tom Young | 16 comments 'Aussie Rick' wrote: "Thanks for taking the time to answer the questions posted by group members Tom and all the best with this novel and your future endeavours. Keep us all posted on how your novel goes, any reviews th..."

Will do. Many thanks.


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