By James R. Stevens
Searching for the Hudson Bombers
In the largest and most deadly conflict in history several squadrons of flyers in RAF Coastal Command went off to a World War in a modiﬁed passenger plane, the Lockheed Model I4 Super Electra, renamed The Hudson Bomber. The Squadrons that ﬂew them were sometimes called. "The Makeshift Armada", This well-researched book is the story of those young men, their girlfriends, and their families who too often were victims of the Hudson Bomber itself, rather than the enemy. James R. Steven's second book on Lockheed Hudson air crew is both poignant and compelling. Written from flyer's diaries. logbooks, letters home and, interviews this book sweeps wide in its panorama of the famed and not so famous Hudson Lads from Great Britain, Canada, Australia, the United States. New Zealand and South Africa.
In his second book on Hudson flyers, James R. Stevens explains, "I wanted to write about the experiences of youth jockeying this altered aircraft. This assistance I received was remarkable. Log books. letters, pictures. along with interviews from Bill, RCAF, & MAT veterans allowed me and I hope, readers to feel what it was like to fly long hours over the sea in a pesky Hudson Bomber."
"The Maw is a feat of extensive research and impassioned narration. Out of a rich assemblage of documentation covering a large cast of characters, we become privy to thoughts, desires, hopes. fears, loves, and loves lost. The flaw is a deeply felt tribute to the camaraderie and heroism of pilots and crews who put collective duty before individual doubt."
– Dr. Nancy Wood (author, Vectors of Memory: Legacies of Trauma in Postwar Europe, Bournemouth, UK; and previous Dean, School of Critical Studies, California Institute of the Arts)
"This shocking and insightful book demonstrates once again how during times of war, respect for human life is so readily sacrificed. Steven's story of the Hudson bomber, a flawed aircraft. and of those who flew it, is both tragic history and intimate human drama. This book will be read with fascination with grief and, at times anger. This is a lesson from W ll with an unmistakable application today."
— Charles Wilkins (author, Walking To New York - A journey Out of The Wilds of Canada, Thunder Bay, Ontario)
“Steven's books on Hudson flyers are the most detailed and readable of any ever written on Coastal Command airmen. Much of the memorable and alarming information is right out of the cockpits of the Lockheed Hudson Bombers in their pursuit of submarines over the seas of World War I.”
— Mike Fletcher (Fal Books, Wragby, Market Rasen, Lincs. UK, www.fa|books.co.uk)
"This book gives my heart a warm glow to know the great sacrifices of World War ll are not being forgotten.l find it incredible that I survived piloting a Hudson aircraft for nearly 1000 hours and this book highlights comrades from all walks of life from many different nationalities that became Hudson aircrew in the RAF. It is a moving tribute that is extremely well researched."
– W/C George Williams C.B.E. RAF 53/608l0.T.U, #6/36 Squadrons, Ascot, W&M. UK
Cover Illustration: Vesa Peltonen
Cover Graphic Design: Aki Peltonen