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Sara V. Olds
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Top graduate of an experimental program to train women as pilots in Britain, Captain Kimberly Thomson struggles to prove her worth in the man's world of the U.S. Army Air Corps of 1942
Air raid sirens took up their wailing warning. The bombing on London started up for yet another night. Maryâ€™s face turned toward the ceiling as if trying to see through the roof. Her shoulders pressed upward while her body shrank downward. It was an unconscious effort to make herself a smaller target. She reached out for Kimâ€™s hand.
"Here we go again," Kim muttered, her pleasant regard of General Lansing dissolving. "Havenâ€™t we suffered enough?"
"I hate this!" said Mary, her face fading to a shade favored by the undead. "Are we too close to the docks?"
Too many times the London docks had been a favorite target of the Nazi bombers, turning the shipping yard into blazing towers of infernos, the fingers of the flames hungrily grabbing at the oxygen in the air.
Kim shook her head. "I think we should be okay."
"It doesnâ€™t matter how often this happens. Iâ€™ll never get used it," muttered Mary.
"No one should have to." Kim cursed under her breath.
The rumble of the airplanes grew louder. The very air seemed to vibrate from the sound of their engines.
"The gas works!" cried an old man wearing a tattered overcoat. "Theyâ€™re headed for the gas works."
"Is that far from here?" Mary asked Kim.
She shrugged and shook her head. "Iâ€™m not that familiar with this part of London."
Telltale whistles of falling bombs were heard in the distance. As the rumbling of the plane engines rose to a deafening level, so did the high-pitched shrilling of the messengers of death. The lights on the ceiling started shaking.
"We need to find a bomb shelter!" Maryâ€™s voice was loud in Kimâ€™s ear. She could feel the air from Maryâ€™s breath on her skin. Her own heart pounded hard in her head, making her dizzy.
Maryâ€™s hand on Kimâ€™s arm shook like a thin leaf caught in a squall. "What do we do?"
Across the pub and now on his feet, the man Kim had been so covertly observing spoke for the first time. "Everyone get in the cellar. Sir," he demanded of the owner, "I assume you have the proper facilities downstairs?"
The man nodded, almost unaware of his movement. "Uhhh--" From the look on his face it was evident the bombing had never come so close before.
A thickness grew in the room. Fear. It was so strong one could almost feel it, taste it.
"Now move!" General Lansing ordered. It was not a voice to be disobeyed.
The command awakened the stunned patrons into action. They scrambled to their feet, moving as directed.
Dazed, Kim blinked once. She hesitated, unable to react to his words.
A man jostled her as he moved by. No choice. Kim took a tight grip on Maryâ€™s hand and the two women shuffled along with the others. A chair fell with a clatter and was ignored.
Outside, an ear-piercing shriek, far louder than the rest, caught everyoneâ€™s attention. Many turned in the direction of the sound. But Kim, seeking any form of protection, pushed Mary under a nearby table and scrambled under right after. Then, throwing her arms around Mary, the two drew close together.
The door of the pub banged open and the heavy blackout curtain flew back. The building across the road blew into millions of pieces with a blinding flash of light and an ear-shattering blast.
Sara Olds knows that war is not romantic. But she feels the sacrifice given by ordinary people in the extraordinary circumstances of World War II should not to be lost or forgotten. As a writer, a dreamer, a student of history and most importantly as a mom, she strives to capture the heroic deeds of daily living to keep the memory of the era alive.
Brigadier: If you are tired of the usual Regency or Medieval romances, why not give yourself a deserved break and step back to the 1940s with General Lansing and his â€˜Brigadierâ€™. Ms Olds has given us a heroine to admire and a hero to die for--you'll be rooting for them all the way. Four Stars!, Rhiannon Owen/Scribes World Review
You will love the charm and beauty of this story of the trials that the women of war endured, also the love story that Ms. Oldâ€™s entwines will leave you so enchanted. This is a very talented lady. EXCELLENT!! 4 BELLS!! ---Donita Lawrence /Bell Book & Candle
Book Publisher: Wings e Press
No. of Pages: 314
Paper Weight (lb): 13.2
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