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Flames in the Field Kindle Edition

4.6 out of 5 stars 49 customer reviews

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Length: 370 pages Word Wise: Enabled Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Rita Kramer's previous books include Maria Montessori: A Biography, At Tender Age, Ed School Follies, and When Morning Comes. Her articles and reviews have appeared in The New York Times Magazine, the International Herald Tribune, American Heritage, Commentary, The American Spectator, the Wilson Quarterly, City Journal and other magazines and anthologies in the U.S. and abroad. She lives in New York City.

Product Details

  • File Size: 2515 KB
  • Print Length: 370 pages
  • Publisher: Penguin Books (November 21, 2011)
  • Publication Date: November 21, 2011
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services LLC
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B006C6NOOK
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Lending: Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #86,095 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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More About the Author

Born and grew up in the Midwest, BA from the College of the University of Chicago. Edited for several publishing firms before entering on a career in journalism (published in New York Times, Wall Street Journal, International Herald Tribune, Commentary, The Public Interest and many other magazines and journals in the U.S. and abroad.) Books include Maria Montessori: A Biography; Ed School Follies: The Miseducation of America's Teachers; Flames in the Field: The Story of Four SOE Agents in Occupied France; and a novel, When Morning Comes.

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
Flames in the Field is a searing account of the heroic efforts of British and French resistance fighters during World War II. Rita Kramer manages to combine both historical detail and subtle character studies in a story that has suspenseful and surprising twists. Although the book is meticulously researched, it reads more like a spy novel that you can't put down. I recommend this book to anyone interested in reading about the unsung heroes who helped to vanquish the Nazis; the under-reported role of women in that courageous mission and the political machinations that turned heroes into pawns in a larger game plan. This book is exciting to read and an important contribution to uncovering the hidden story behind the Allied victory.
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Format: Paperback
Anyone in search of first-rate movie material--whether screenwriter, director-producer, or development company--could do worse than to check out Rita Kramer's Flames in the Field, the true story of four courageous British agents who were dropped into occupied France during World War II to organize resistance groups against the Nazis. The fact that the agents were young women only adds to the poignancy of what is at once a tale of suspense and intrigue and a tragic story of possible betrayal. Biographer Kramer (she wrote the definitive life the 19th-century educator Maria Montessori) expertly recounts how these women and their colleagues sought to carry out Winston Churchill's injunction to "set Europe ablaze," all the while unknowingly caught in a Byzantine web of scheming on both sides. Kramer's original research (both among archives and survivors) is a substantial contribution to the scholarship on the cult of intelligence, and her elegant prose and flawless sense of pace make the book a page-turner, effortlessly readable. But it's the subjects themselves, too--the men and women of a heroic time--as well as the complexity of motives and events in a situation where almost any moral choice is tragic, that make her story such a stunning tableau.
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Format: Paperback
"Flames in the Field" is a mesmerizing, eye-opening account of a World War II secret operation, still little known, and of four of its women operatives. It is the most vivid kind of historical writing and though it tells a story whose terrible ending the reader knows from the beginning-- all four died in a concentration camp in France because of their work-- it reads like a mystery or suspense tale. This is a book you cannot put down, because of the tension the author maintains as she weaves together different strands from different people, places and politics. The complex tapestry that results illuminates not just the role of women in the Special Operations Executive (SOE), not just the kind of anti-Semitism that the French as well as the Nazis practiced, but the Machievellian triage that goes on in wartime, the inescapable treacheries, the score-keeping and the record-keeping, the pettinesses and the heroism. This is one of the few history books I know that I will want to read again.
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Format: Paperback
Flames in the Field is an exciting book that tells the story of women agents who operated behind enemy lines during World War II. The research is impeccable, and the story is fascinating and well-written. A must read for anyone interested in World War II history, as well as for aficionados of women's history.
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Format: Paperback
This book is a must read. There's a story here, a very great story. It's not a mere tale about spys, espionage and intrigue but a "true" story based on real life and actual events of the lives of four brave women who volunteered their lives in a supreme act of unselfishness and who faced extreme danger on a daily basis. Four women who loved their country and gave their lives to preserve what we nowadays take for granted. When you stand to salute the flag, you will also salute the memory of these women. You'll be going back to the cover of the book and the pictures inside to look into their faces in their photos and ask yourself how they could have done what they did. Mrs. Kramer's research is thorough and her efforts are to be praised and applauded. You will cry for these women and you will be angered at times by the machinations and bumblings at their expense. If ever there was a book which needs to find it's way to the screen, this is it! My only hope is that when, and I am sure that it will, hit the silver screen, that the actresses who are chosen to play the roles of these heroic women, are indeed exceptional, and able to do justice to the roles, and to the author's writing talent in telling us about them.
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Format: Paperback
Fascinating story. There is nothing in this book conveying romantic intrigue in the James Bond sense. The author depicts inter rival jealousies between different resistance factions. insane egos, personal gains, manipulations. lies and deceits.
Written also is the near criminal blunders made by the SOE costing many SOE agents lives.
This is not a pretty story. It is not romantic adventure yet this book is near impossible to put down.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
An avid reader of WW11 spy novels, I was thoroughly mesmerized by this well written true account of four brave women. Their story demonstrates that there will always be people willing to fight for their beliefs no matter what the risks.
Whether they were naive, ill informed or perhaps romanticising about their soon to be dangerous assignments, these four woman - and others like them - did the best they could during their all too often too short a time in service. For me this book serves as a beginning. I plan to read more about the real people involved in the planning and those who carried out the espionage tactics during the war years rather than fictional counterparts. Thanks to the author and her many sources who undertook the research to bring this fascinating story to print. A remarkable tribute to four women who chose the hard way - do something, when so many chose the easy way - do nothing.
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