Fresh from school in June 1916, Lieutenant Oliver Paxton’s first solo flight is to lead a formation of biplanes across the Channel to join Hornet Squadron in France.
Five days later, he crash-lands at his destination, having lost his map, his ballast and every single plane in his charge. To his C.O. he’s an idiot, to everyone else—especially the tormenting Australian who shares his billet—a pompous bastard.
This is 1916, the year of the Somme, giving Paxton precious little time to grow from innocent to veteran.
About Derek Robinson
Derek Robinson, the son of a policeman, read history at Cambridge before working in advertising in London and New York. His novel Goshawk Squadron was shortlisted for the Booker Prize in 1971.