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Literature & Fiction - Short Stories & Anthologies

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Grounded Eagles: Three Tales of the RAF in WWII

ISBN: 9780989159791
Binding: Paperback
Author: Helena P. Schrader
Pages: 356
Trim: 6” x 9” inches
Published: 11/1/2021

Three tales that explore the problems of coping with injury, family commitments in wartime, and PTSS. Whether facing plastic surgery after defacing burns or disciplinary action for cowardice, this book explores the emotions behind the heroics

A Stranger in the Mirror:

David Goldman, a German Jew with Canadian citizenship, is shot down in flames while flying for the RAF in September 1940. His face is burned beyond recognition, and he is told he will never fly again. While the legendary plastic surgeon Dr. McIndoe reconstructs a face and hands one painful operation at a time, the 22-year-old former fighter pilot must come to terms with the stranger in the mirror and decide who he really is.

A Rose in November: A WWII Love Story for the Not-so-Young

Not all lovers are young. Rhys Jenkins is "Chiefy" of a Spitfire squadron in late 1940, a full-time job in itself, but he is also a widower with two teenage children in need of his attention. Hattie FitzSimmons has devoted her life to the Salvation Army ever since WWI ended her hopes for a husband and family of her own. They are no longer young when they find each other, but they both feel things are 'right' — until Rhys discovers that Hattie has been hiding something from him.

Lack of Moral Fibre:

In late November 1943, Flight Engineer Christopher "Kit" Moran, DFM, refuses to fly to Berlin on what should have been the seventh "op" of his second tour of duty. His superiors post him for "lack in moral fibre" and he finds himself in a mysterious DYDN center. Here, psychiatrist Wing Commander Dr. Grace must determine if he has had a mental breakdown requiring psychiatric treatment — or if he deserves humiliation and disciplinary action for cowardice.


Helena P. Schrader is an established aviation author and expert on the Second World War. She earned a PhD in History (cum Laude) from the University of Hamburg with a ground-breaking dissertation on a leading member of the German Resistance to Hitler. Her non-fiction publications include "Sisters in Arms: The Women who Flew in WWII," "The Blockade Breakers: The Berlin Airlift," and "Codename Valkyrie: General Friederich Olbricht and the Plot against Hitler." In addition, Helena has published twenty-one historical novels and won numerous literary awards. Her novel on the Battle of Britain, Where Eagles Never Flew, won the Hemingway Award for 20th Century Wartime Fiction and a Maincrest Media Award for Historical Fiction. RAF Battle of Britain ace Wing Commander Bob Doe called it "the best book" he had ever seen about the battle. He went on to say: "Refreshingly, it got it smack-on the way it was for us fighter pilots."


"Three intriguingly intertwined stories by aviation expert and award-winning author Helena P. Schrader focus on the experiences of wartime pilots in the sky and on the ground, coping with trauma, disability, and the possibilities for new challenges.... Schrader's expertise in the subject matter she has chosen is evident on every page of the three tales she has created. ...based on true incidents of war...Schrader has constructed a trio of powerful tales expressing a myriad of viewpoints - male, female, young, old – with rich historical detail to underpin and enrich each offering." - Barbara Bamberger Scott

"Grounded Eagles is a truly outstanding collection of three stories that pull at the reader's heartstrings for totally different reasons. Author Helena P. Schrader has put together an unusual collection in that they focus on the RAF and the war from a different perspective than most. It is hard to single out one of the three as my favorite ... All three stories are beautifully compiled and written and although I'm not a great reader of novellas, I wouldn't hesitate to highly recommend this read and indeed anything else from the portfolio of this clearly talented author." - Grant Leischman

"Grounded Eagles is both well researched and very well written. While the main characters are fictional, acclaimed historian and author Helena P Schrader draws on real-life experiences and portrays aerial warfare and its horrors in graphic detail. She explores the comradeship, bravery, and unsung devotion to duty of airmen and ground crew, as well as their human frailties and emotional vulnerability. ... This book comes at a time when memories of World War II are fading and is thus a celebration of what good can come from a desperate situation, as well as being a timely reminder of the human cost of warfare. It is an excellent publication! This is one of the best books about the RAF in WWII." - Leonard William Smuts

"This was wonderful. A gripping story covering both the human side of war with a widower plus teens both dealing with issues and military realities in southern England in WW2. I personally found it gripping with Southampton, Portsmouth, Gosport details plus the realities of aircraft maintenance and yet comraderie all through. Reading of the emotions, struggles through different paradigms of each character made it surprisingly gripping and compelling. I read it in two sittings punctuated only by a nights sleep. Would def read more by the same author." - AL

"A moving tale of one man's struggle to cope with the daily life and death experiences as a Flight Engineer on a Lancaster bomber during the Second World War. Kit Moran refuses to fly again after a harrowing raid over Berlin ... [he] is grounded as having lack of moral fibre ... A brilliantly authentic telling of the experiences of one of the heroic bombing crews who risked their lives to bring an end to the war with Germany. One of the best pieces of fiction I have read for many a year and it left me with tears in the eyes at the end (and I'm not over emotional!)." - John Orton