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Publisher's Summary

On his 19th birthday, James E. Brown tries to fake to his flight instructor that he has flown before. On his 21st birthday, Brown is on his way home after logging 85 missions in a P-47 fighter over Italy, France, and Germany.

Brown's stories surrounding his training and combat experiences in World War II reveal brushes with death, continuous peril and, ultimately, a coming of age for a young man whose freshman year in college becomes instead a heroic engagement with one of the fiercest enemies his country has ever encountered.

Ever dutiful to the mother who tells him to "write it down, Jamie", Brown notes his experiences in the journal she provides and adds detail later to deliver a firsthand account of life as a pilot in the final months of combat within the European Theater.

Serving as Tail-End Charley - the last man out - in most of the missions he flew, Brown's job was to record results for the interrogation officers afterward. But Brown offers much more insight in this memoir. Follow his triumphs and travails with colleagues who become lifelong compatriots during an indelible period in American history.

©2017 James E. Brown (P)2018 Tantor

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Good performance, ok srory<br />

Interesting story about P47 fliers near the end of WWIi. The narrator tried to build up suspense and I kept waiting for more action. Don't get me wrong, author and his colleagues made a great contribution and sacrifice, but a little mundane.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Good read !

Honest, well written and interesting. A very good read, especially if your an aviation fan or a WWII buff.

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    2 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars

dry story, astonishingly devoid of energy

boring story of a boring young pilot with a boring repetitive job in one of the best airplanes of ww2. monotone narrator who seems to to have a disdain for inflection and punctuation.
several times different events are retold tandem.
I think the narrator found a way to pad his by the hour billing.

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  • James
  • 05-03-18

As it was

This book is well written and well read. The style is matter of fact and undramatic. I suspect that it gives a truly authentic account of life as a fighter bomber pilot in the last months of the war. Dangerous and unglamorous and far removed from the “knight of the sky” fighter pilot image. It also underlines just how well trained USAAF pilots were at this stage of the war. First class.