POW bibliography - books/memoirs

Discussion in 'Prisoners of War' started by Antipodean Andy, Jun 3, 2008.

  1. Antipodean Andy

    Antipodean Andy New Member

    Was just thinking, probably because I walk by a statue of Weary Dunlop twice every day, what POW books are out there and whether we could put a bibliography of sorts together.

    Here's what I've got in my collection:
    Prisoners of Japan:
    The Rats of Rangoon - W/C Hudson
    Hellfire - Cameron Forbes
    One Fourteenth of an Elephant - Ian Denys Peek
    Out of the Smoke, Into the Smother, The Sword and the Blossom - Ray Parkin trilogy
    Ghost Soldiers - Hampton Sides

    Prisoners of Germany:
    The Wooden Horse - Eric Williams

    Other books that mention periods of incarceration - Nicky Barr - Australian Air Ace by Peter Dornan and War in a Stringbag by Charles Lamb.
  2. Pathfinder

    Pathfinder Guest


    "PILOT ON THE RUN: The Epic Escape from Occupied France of Flight Sergeant L.S.M. (Chalky) White, RNZAF" - Errol Brathwaite
  3. Kyt

    Kyt Άρης

    Footprints on the Sands of Time by Oliver Clutton-Brock. The first half is narrative on camps, histories etc. The second lists every Bomber Command POW, with loss date, aircraft and camp. An absolute must for anyone interested in BC.

    The Last Escape: The Untold Story of Allied Prisoners of War in Germany 1944-1945 Tony Rennell and John Nichol

    We Flew, We Fell, We Lived: The Remarkable Reminiscences of Second World War Evaders and Prisoners of War Philip LaGrandeur (with an intro by Jimmy James), and Jimmy also wrote Moonless Night: Wartime Diary of a Great Escaper

    Lie in the Dark and Listen: The Remarkable Exploits of a WWII Bomber Pilot and Great Escaper Ken Rees and Karen Arrandale

    Under the Wire William Ash and Brendan Foley
  4. Pathfinder

    Pathfinder Guest

    "Footprints On The Sands Of Time" is a good book :)

    I've read it several times before and it has a lot of good information, like Kyt's just said.
  5. Kyt

    Kyt Άρης

    Mustn't forget POW: Allied Prisoners in Europe, 1939-45 by Martin Gilbert. A good overview of POWs from all the services

    Guests of the State: The Story of Allied & Axis Servicemen Interned in Ireland During World War II T. Ryle Dwyer. This is an interesting read, as the aircrews weren't actually POWs but their internment often came close to that. The most interesting aspects are the pressure put bu the US and British authorities on the Irish state to treat their internees with the highest regard or suffer the consequences - and yet they wanted Ireland to treat the Luftwaffe internees as POWs.
  6. Kyt

    Kyt Άρης

    A Bird Over Berlin Tony Bird DFC. Experiences of a 61 Squadron Lancaster pilot and POW

    A Member of the RAF of Indeterminate Race Cy Grant. I recently bought this book, written by the broadcaster and actor. He was a member of 103 Squadron who was shotdown in 1943. A member of the RAF of indeterminate race is the translation of a sardonic caption that appeared under Cy’s photograph in a German newspaper shortly after his capture by the SS - evidently sneering at the deployment of coloured aircrew by the RAF.

    Just a Survivor Phil Potts. Experiences of a 103 Squadron navigator who later became a POW at Stalag Luft 7, after being shotdown in 1944

    Memoirs of a Goldfish
    Jim Burtt-Smith. A 115 Sqn Wellington pilot who was later a POW at Stalag Luft 8b at Lamsdor, after being shotdown in 1942, and rescued from the North Sea

    Pathfinder Force Balkans Geoff Curtis. 614 Squadron navigator, shotdown over Hungry in 1944, and held as a POW there.

    The Long Haul
    William Bloxham. Flight Engineer on 138 (Special Duties) Squadron Halifax, shotdown in December 1942, on a mission to frop arms to the Dutch resistence.
  7. Antipodean Andy

    Antipodean Andy New Member

    Looking at my shelf, I've seen another one:

    The Evaders by Emerson Lavender and Norman Sheffe - stories of Canadian aircrew and their helpers.
  8. Brian S

    Brian S Guest

    P.O.W. Books

    Voices from the Fortress. Paul Rea. Story of Repeat Escapers who were incarcerated in a Concentration Camp.

    Escape from Crete. Charles Jager. Charles Personal account of his escapes

    Gunner Inglorious . Jim Henderson. Jims own story of capture at Knightsbridge and how neglected wounds resulted in the loss of a leg.

    No Honour No Glory.Spence Edge and Jim Henderson. The story of P.O.W. lost on the "Jason"and Nino Bixio.

    In The Bag. Peter Ogilvie and Newman Robinson. They tell of their survival of the "Jason" incident.

    The Broken Column C.E.T.Warren and James Benson The Authors tell the story of an ordinary Seaman who was a Prisoner of the Italians, escaped and went on to Command a Brigade of Partisans.

    Fight Another Day J.M.Langley Part of the story of MI9s Roll in Escape and Evasion by a man who escaped and then played a large role in MI9.

    Australian Partisan. Lynette Oates with Ian Sproule.

    When The Moon Rises. Tony Davis. The story of an Army Officer who Escaped from a Train in Italy.

    Yesterdays Drums. A.A.Vercoe. The story of a Capture in N.Africa,P.O.W. in Italy and Stalag 1VB Germany.

    My Delayed Return. Denis E.Slack. The Author flew in Mk.2 Halifax until shot down and eventually was an inmate of Stalag 1VB.

    These are all I can see from where I am sitting.
  9. Antipodean Andy

    Antipodean Andy New Member

    I was hoping you'd weigh in, Brian!

    Even though I was looking at my shelves last night, I missed these:

    The Naked Island - Russell Braddon
    Silk and Barbed Wire - edited by Brian Walley
  10. Brian S

    Brian S Guest

    P.O.W. Books

    There are many more Andy still boxed up. Quite a few from your part of the World given as payment in kind for research done.

    Then there are also my own two Volumes that index by name all the Escapers and Evaders Reports at Kew. That is all that have been released. There are very few available for the Far East,but there is always WO344 to fall back on.
  11. Antipodean Andy

    Antipodean Andy New Member

    WO344? Forgive my ignorance.

    The next book on the reading list usually picks itself and I've been leading towards the first book of the Ray Parkin trilogy, Into the Smoke, or Forbes' Hellfire. That got me thinking just what else was out there.

    I think even David Malouf, the novellist, wrote about POWs' experiences both fact and fiction.
  12. Kyt

    Kyt Άρης

    A Crowd Is Not Company Robert Kee One of the earliest POW books

    Amazon.co.uk: A Crowd Is Not Company: Robert Kee: Books

    The journalist and broadcaster Robert Kee was an RAF bomber pilot in the war, was shot down, captured and spent three years and three months in a German POW camp. After several false starts Kee successfully escaped. In compelling detail, he describes his desperate journey across Poland, a journey that meant running the gauntlet of Nazism. Written like a novel, and indeed published as such in 1947 to wide acclaim, this book is in fact an autobiography and 'arguably the best POW book ever written' The Times.
  13. morse1001

    morse1001 Guest

    There is also Cyril Rlofe, "Against the Wind" who was shot down and was sent to Poland, where he escaped. The book describes his travels and experiences of maoving through wartime Poland not only as Aircrew POW but as being jewish as well.
  14. Brian S

    Brian S Guest

    The National Archive

    Couldn't answer before Andy;I was getting a fix at the U.K.National Archives.
    Wo344 is a class of Document where all the P.O.W. Liberation Reports are to be found.
    Unfortunately not 100% filled in a Questionaire.
  15. Brian S

    Brian S Guest


    Here's another one.

    "Before I Forget" by Roy Cawston. Roy was taken Prisoner in N/Africa, transported to Italy on an Italian Cruiser,incarcerated in PG52 and finally St 344 Lamsdorf.

    The BBC produced a programme on Dunkirk 2 or 3 years ago. Part of the story was based on Langleys Book,"To Fight another Day".

    It was well worth watching.
  16. Brian S

    Brian S Guest


    Andy one you should read is by a fellow Countryman of Yours;
    Edwin Broomhead. "Barbed Wire in the Sunset" It tells of his capture in N/Africa and of his time in a Work Camp under German control in the Tripoli area. Feldpost 12545.
  17. Antipodean Andy

    Antipodean Andy New Member

    Interesting, thanks Brian.

    Haven't heard of that book, Brian. Given my interest in North Africa, it looks like I'll have to hunt it down. You're as bad as Kyt recommending books! I like it!

    I first became aware of the trauma experienced by returned POWs when reading Randolph Stow's THe Merry Go Round in the Sea when the principal character's brotherhcousin/idol (can't remember) returns home after the war a completely changed person. Read the book in Year 10 for school, I think - so about 17 years ago. Still got it on my shelf.
  18. Kyt

    Kyt Άρης

  19. NickFenton

    NickFenton Member

    Great thread. Well on the way to producing my own research for my boys about their Grandfather. Some good research ideas here.

    Just when you think you have found out all you can!!!!

  20. NickFenton

    NickFenton Member

    By the way, at TNA, there is an excellent record of life in Sagan, Stalag Luft 3. Really brings it home.


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