Bombs Away: The Story of a Bomber Team

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Overview

A magnificent volume of short novels and an essential World War II report from one of America's great twentieth-century writers

On the heels of the enormous success of his masterwork The Grapes of Wrath?and at the height of the American war effort-John Steinbeck, one of the most prolific and influential literary figures of his generation, wrote Bombs Away, a nonfiction account of his experiences with U.S. Army Air Force bomber crews during World War II. Now, for the first time ...

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Bombs Away: The Story of a Bomber Team

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Overview

A magnificent volume of short novels and an essential World War II report from one of America's great twentieth-century writers

On the heels of the enormous success of his masterwork The Grapes of Wrath?and at the height of the American war effort-John Steinbeck, one of the most prolific and influential literary figures of his generation, wrote Bombs Away, a nonfiction account of his experiences with U.S. Army Air Force bomber crews during World War II. Now, for the first time since its original publication in 1942, Penguin Classics presents this exclusive edition of Steinbeck's introduction to the then-nascent U.S. Army Air Force and its bomber crew-the essential core unit behind American air power that Steinbeck described as "the greatest team in the world."

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Editorial Reviews

Booknews
A reprint of the Viking Press edition of 1942. Steinbeck was commissioned by the US Army Air Forces to recruit flyers. With 60 photos by John Swope. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781557783110
  • Publisher: Paragon House Publishers
  • Publication date: 10/28/1990
  • Pages: 192

Meet the Author

John Steinbeck

James H. Meredith is an internationally respected scholar on the literature and films of twentieth-century wars. He lives in Summerville, Georgia.

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    1. Also Known As:
      Amnesia Glasscock
      John Ernst Steinbeck, Jr. (full name); Amnesia Glasscock
    1. Date of Birth:
      February 27, 1902
    2. Place of Birth:
      Salinas, California
    1. Date of Death:
      December 20, 1968
    2. Place of Death:
      New York, New York

Customer Reviews

Average Rating 3.5
( 3 )
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Sort by: Showing 1 – 5 of 3 Customer Reviews
  • Posted March 26, 2013

    a quick read and invaluable for anyone who wants to understand the air war in Europe during World War II

    Written for the U.S. Army Air Corps in the early days of World War II, Bombs Away gives readers insight into the training of individual members of a heavy bomber (B-17 and B-24) crews and their molding into a functioning team. Throughout the book, Steinbeck emphasizes that, although the pilot may be the most visible person on the crew, each member had a vital job to perform. Of course, the pilot, navigator and bombardier were all commissioned officers, the rest of the crew NCOs – an important distinction in any hierarchical organization. Those of higher rank were ostensibly treated better as prisoners of war, something the author never alludes to. That’s why there were no privates on a bomb crew. Steinbeck mentions more than once that the Army Air Corps took “the cream of the crop” from among Army enlistees – following extensive testing; he emphasized that, although one could apply as a pilot, the determination of which job a man was to be trained for was decided by those tests. I found the section on the training programs for various jobs – pilot, gunner, radio engineer, etc. – fascinating. I didn’t know that bombardiers alone were entrusted with the top-secret Norden bombsight – they took it from the safe in which it was stored when not in use and installed it into the plane, then removed it and returned it to the safe when a run was done. It is little details like that that make Bombs Away so interesting and revealing. Bombs Away is a quick read and invaluable for anyone who wants to understand the air war in Europe during World War II. But I had to constantly remind myself that this was very much a piece of propaganda and to be read as such.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 20, 2010

    I Also Recommend:

    Bombs Away

    An inspiring and thrilling account about ordinary people drafted to become airmen within a flying bomber squadron during World War Two. They come from all walks of life, may be the guys next door and undergo training in preparation to their mission. Steinbeck provides us with much information military-wise but his accounts stresses the human side of those people to create a link with the reader. What war correspondence should be : information and observation within high-quality journalism. The introduction by James H. Meredith is particularly enlightening.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 21, 2010

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    Posted October 20, 2009

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 29, 2009

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