Wednesday, February 24, 2010
With Wings Like Eagles by Michael Korda
I just finished With Wings Like Eagles by Michael Korda. That didn't take long. A good, interesting book about the Battle of Britain, which was in the summer of 1940, a good year and a half before the US got into the war. The main thrust of the book is that Hugh Dowding, the head of Fighter Command, and hence all fighter operations during the Battle, was a prophet who saw what form the air battle was going to take and correctly prepared for it. It was also fortunate for Britain that the two Prime Ministers before Churchill (Baldwin & Chamberlain) helped build up the fighter forces long before the war broke out.
I am reading along here and the author mentions that he got out of RAF in 1953. Wait a minute! 1953? I was two years old in 1953! How old is this guy? Old. Born in 1933, that would make him 77, and he can still turn out a best-selling book. Huh.
I am a little disappointed in the quality of the paper used in this book. The book is a little bigger than your standard paperback, about 5 & 1/2" by 8. Used to be larger paperbacks like this used a better grade of paper, but this looks and feels a whole lot like newsprint. An Alan Furst novel I bought recently suffers from the same affliction. Is this just the effect of general penny pinching by the publishers, or an effect of the Bush administration spending a trillion dollars on the war on terror? Steak is now nearly $10 a pound, but the consumer price index is only up 3 & 1/2% since 2001. How can that be? Oh, didn't you know? Steak isn't included in the CPI calculations any more. You can eat chicken instead. Aren't you glad you don't need to eat steak any more? I know I am. NOT.