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Convoy!: Drama in Arctic Waters Paperback – August, 2000
"Warlight" by Michael Ondaatje
A dramatic coming-of-age story set in the decade after World War II, "Warlight" is the mesmerizing new novel from the best-selling author of "The English Patient." Learn more
About the Author
Paul Kemp established an early reputation as a naval historian, able to mix original research and scholarship with exciting narrative writing. He was for a while attached to the Imperial War Museum, and now writes naval history full time.
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The Arctic convoys story has been told many times but Kemp's book benefits from use of wartime reports and first-person narratives. Each convoy is comprehensively described as are the background events and political underpinnings of the whole convoy effort. In discussing the mistakes made, coverage seems evenhanded, brickbats being thrown where deserved.
Though somewhat dated, Kemp's book is a good read, both insightful and exciting.
The book, a straight reprint of a 1993 Arms and Armour Press book, was obviously done in the pre-spellchecker days. Small typos run throughout the book.
He goes into detail about each convoy including their route of travel, their stops along the way and the dogged German resistance they encountered.
A full chapter is devoted to the often touchy subject that the Arctic Convoy system is now infamous for, that of the PQ17 debacle and the recriminations that still exist today. Many blame high command for the famous scatter order, but as we know the message was misread and the results are tragic. All the while the nation receiving this aid, the USSR, did nothing to help or assist in any way what so ever. In my opinion a very selfish and ungrateful act.
Photos are provided and are well discribed.