World War 2

Some sunny day!

In August 1945 Cyril Patmore of the Royal Scots Fusiliers returned on compassionate leave from India.

Poisonous relations

‘The Axis powers and France,’ declared Marshall Pétain and Hitler at Montoire in October 1940, ‘have a common interest in the defeat of England as soon as possible.’ Why this should have been so is one of the many interesting questions to which this book offers no satisfactory answer.

When words were scarce

Most of us are brought up not badly, but wrongly.

From Madrid with love

In June 1943 the film star Leslie Howard was mysteriously killed when his plane was shot down by the Luftwaffe on a return flight from Spain.

Magnificent killing machine

Lancaster: The Second World War’s Greatest Bomber, by Leo McKinstry

Concentrating on sideshows

It is becoming difficult to say anything new about Churchill as a war leader.

Recent crime fiction

An Empty Death (Orion, £18.99) is the second instalment of the series Laura Wilson began with her previous book, the award-winning Stratton’s War.

Rich pickings

Delicious is a word that keeps coming to mind as one reads Jane Gardam’s new novel.

Dangerous liaisons

Surviving, by Allan Massie
The Death of a Pope, by Piers Paul Read
Coward at the Bridge, by James Delingpole

Darkness at dawn

D-Day: The Battle for Normandy, by Anthony Beevor
The Forgotten Voices of D-Day, by Roderick Bailey, in association with the Imperial War Museum

Reading between the lines

‘Voltaire and the Sun King rolled into one’ is how Elizabeth Longford has described her Oxford tutor Maurice Bowra.

Not just Hitler

The Third Reich at War, 1939-1945, by Richard L. Evans