Tuesday, March 8, 2016

Book Review: Shadow Knights



(Note:  This post appeared on my Stern Rake Studio blog three days ago)

It's been a while since I read a non-fiction book, so I think it's time to take a break from today's dreary headlines.

Nearly six years ago, Simon & Schuster started a line of books called Pulp History.  The intent was to introduce readers to some of the past's most thrilling stories.

And what could be more thrilling than British agents infiltrating Nazi-occupied Europe?

Shadow Knights: The Secret War Against Hitler is an illustrated book about some of the men and women of Britain's Special Operations Executive (SOE)

While the book touches on various aspects of SOE's existence, the focus rests on the exploits of Harry Ree, Noor Inayat Khan, and the team of Norwegians responsible for the destruction of Germany's heavy water production.

In addition to stirring accounts of survival, betrayal, capture and the occasional triumph; Shadow Knights is lavishly illustrated with maps, sidebar notes, while artist Jeffrey Smith's splash pages bring the characters to life.

I give this book a solid four-star rating, leaning more towards work of entertainment than an in-depth historical analysis of irregular warfare waged against Nazi Germany.  For the sake of telling stories of derring do, Shadow Knights "pulps over" many aspects of World War II, outside the scope of SOE's operations. 
The book has a 4.5-star rating out of 5 on Amazon.com.

Unfortunately, Simon & Schuster's Pulp History fizzled out after releasing only two books, the second being, Devil Dog: The Amazing True Story of the Man Who Saved America.

Both books can be found in used book stores or through Amazon.com.

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