The incredible untold World War II story of Australian hero BARNEY GREATREX - from Bomber Command to French Resistance fighter.
A school and university cadet in Sydney, Barney Greatrex signed up for RAF Bomber Command in 1941, eager to get straight into the very centre of the Allied counterattack. Bombing Germany night after night, Barney's 61 Squadron faced continual enemy fighter attacks and anti-aircraft fire - death or capture by the Nazis loomed large. Very few survived more than 20 missions, and it was on his 20th mission, in 1944, that Barney's luck finally ran out: he was shot down over occupied France.
But his war was far from over. Rescued by the French Resistance, Barney seized the opportunity to carry on fighting and joined the Maquis in the liberation of France from the occupying German forces, who rarely took prisoners.
Later, Barney was awarded the French Legion of Honour, but for seventy years he said almost nothing of his incredible war service - surviving two of the most dangerous battlefronts. Aged 97, Barney Greatrex revealed his truly great Australian war story to acclaimed bestselling author Michael Veitch.
'fascinating . . . Veitch brings the story vividly to life' Sydney Morning Herald Pick of the Week
'Veitch has done a wonderful job . . . a fast-paced and thrilling tale' Daily Telegraph
an extraordinary story - Gold Coast Bulletin
Brilliantly researched and sympathetically told, 44 Days is more than just a fitting tribute to brave but overlooked heroes. It's also a top read. - Daily Telegraph on Michael Veitch's 44 DAYS
should be part of Australian military folklore - Adelaide Advertiser on Michael Veitch's 44 DAYS
compelling - Sydney Morning Herald on Michael Veitch's Heroes of the Skies
fascinating - Sydney Morning Herald
Michael Veitch, as in his brilliant 44 Days, weaves Barney's narrative with adroit segues into the wider war. - Adelaide Advertiser
An entertaining and comprehensive tour . . . Few readers will remain unmoved. - Sydney Morning Herald on Michael Veitch's The Forgotten Islands
A rich and enjoyable island-hopping journey. - SUNDAY HERALD SUN on Michael Veitch's THE FORGOTTEN ISLANDS
Michael Veitch is well known as an author, actor, comedian and former ABC television and radio presenter. His books include the critically acclaimed accounts of Australian airmen in World War II, 44 Days, Heroes of the Skies, Fly, Flak and Barney Greatrex. He lives in the Yarra Valley, outside Melbourne.