The Devil’s Own Dice is mostly set in 13th Century Burgundy, France and covers the great Battle of Bouvines, which shaped Europe for the next few hundred years. I have had a look on the internet for any tours of the battle sites in the book and the best I can come up with is Battlefield Tours by Leger Holidays who have many tours to France, mostly for battles of WWII.
But they also do a tour of Burgundy so that might be worth checking out.
I just finished reading Kicker by Grey Hoover; about Kickers, the men who ‘kicked’ cargo out of freight aircraft in the Far East during WWII. Its a very interesting book and left me speechless in places. Here is my review:
It is with great pleasure that I review the biography Kicker, and it’s not often I can say that!
I pride myself on knowing a lot about WWII but I knew nothing about ‘Kickers,’ the brave men who kicked the supplies out of American transport aircraft in the Far East Theatre, during the War.
Into this chaotic, dangerous and inhospitable world comes Private Sam Huber. He applied himself to the task at hand without complaint and soaks up the help of veterans around him and the exotic sights that surround him.
The book is full of lovely vignettes of life in places like Calcutta and Casablanca and contains some of the most harrowing scenes I have yet come across in any war book.
I don’t want to give too much away but the native in Burma who risked everything to help Huber left me speechless; I have never read of a greater act of bravery.
The War certainly brought out the worst and the very best in the human race. If you want your dose of stories from the font of truth and not fiction, read Kicker. If you like films like Too Late the Hero and Merrill’s Marauders but you want to get beneath the surface of these guys, then read Kicker. And if you want to know how the wives and children suffered at home, read Kicker.
I see that BP (British Petroleum) stocks are up in the UK and USA so maybe now is a good time to invest in petrochemicals.
Fuel has always been expensive, and more importantly during wartime, heavy. In September 1943, when the heroes of Attack Hitler’s Bunker! were trying a precision bombing attack on Hitler’s Bunker in Berlin, that latest Hawker Hurricane, the MKII, required all of its 97 gallons of high-octane fuel, 34.5 gallons each in wing tanks and 28 in a small tank ahead of the cockpit, to achieve a range of 600 miles. It could carry 2 x 500 lb canisters or bombs but would barely be able to reach Berlin from Norfolk, let alone carry out the attack and return.
Drop tanks were not yet available for Allied aircraft and in fact even the German Luftwaffe had limited use for them. Not until October, did the first P-47 Thunderbolts arrive in the European Theatre of War, equipped with drop tanks. But P-47s were to big to negotiate the streets of Berlin in the sort of precision attack required to hit the Bunker and the attack had to be made in September.
What could the answer be?
Richard Earlgood comes up with an almost unique solution; piggy-backing the Hurricane fighters on 4-engine Short Stirling bombers. I say ‘almost’ unique because Short had achieve the same thing before the War with the Mayo Flying Boat. In this way, the Hurricanes could, in theory, reach Veluwemeer in Holland, a large body of water, which had a strong resistance presence, from Berlin.
The Stirling could carry roughly the weight of a Hurricane in bombs and, suitably modified, carry a Hurricane on a framework above its fuselage. For the Hurricane, this arrangement would not be unique either. The Hurricat had been a short-lived version of the fighter modified to be launched by catapult from cargo ships in order to defend them against U-boats.
This all looks great on paper to the Air Ministry but, in practice, the fully-loaded fighters prove too heavy for the bombers to take off and the Hurricanes cannot manoeuvre or make the distance with the fully loaded canisters.
Yes, they are coming; book trailer videos for some of my books.
I haven’t decided which, but probably the Ordo Lupus series, Iron series and Attack Hitler’s Bunker!
I have already put together rough versions for Too Bright the Sun and Ordo Lupus and the Temple Gate. The scripts are below. I am always looking for input and feedback so if you want anything changed in the scripts, please comment below. If you want to see the rough videos, you will need to have a subscription to the newsletter and have a gmail (or yahoo) account. If you have both, you should already be able to see the videos by clicking on the links below. If you don’t, then sign up for the newsletter right away!
On the Eiffel Tower viewing platform, Georgina had cut a hole in the safety fence with wire-cutters – big enough to climb through. She stared into the distance with a look of defiance in her face as she shouted:
“Don’t stop me!”
An ex-M.I.6 agent is walking his daughter to school when a slit in the sky opens up and something grabs her. Her mangled body is found but the death is unexplained.
Years later, the police begin to suspect him when a pattern of similar murders occur, moving towards Paris. He goes on the run to clear his name and save his marriage.
Scene 2 – Fade in picture of Georgina’s face and scroll up. Music moves to chorus.
Torn between his wife and Georgina, a French beauty, being pursued by a Catholic sect of assassins, things only become more confusing when the assassins save his life.
Scroll Georgina’s face up even more to show strange symbols.
Scene 3 – Revert to black background.
There are strange forces at work around him.
Scene 4 – Fade in picture of Serpent’s face and scroll up.
Scene 5 – Revert to black background.
If he can stay alive, he won’t rest until he has slain his daughter’s killer.
Scene 6 – change background to front cover. Show complete cover. Fade in title of book and author name. Roll reviews.