Billy Bishop (Hardback)
  • Billy Bishop (Hardback)
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Billy Bishop (Hardback)

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£20.00
Hardback 192 Pages / Published: 31/08/2014
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William Avery Bishop best known as Billy has been hailed as the British Empires highest-scoring World War I fighter ace. Officially credited with victory in seventy-two air battles, the Canadian-born pilot was honoured in a special ceremony by King George V, who presented Bishop with the Victoria Cross, Distinguished Service Order and Military Cross at the same time. Bishop also became an early recipient of the Distinguished Flying Cross. Making lone wolf attacks on German aircraft, the daring young flyer pursued targets over enemy lines without having to be responsible for less experienced men in a patrol. Bishops approach to aerial combat was extremely dangerous, however, making him more vulnerable to his adversaries. And, with sparse independent corroboration of his air fighting claims, Bishops tactic left him open to suspicions about the veracity of his combat reports. A key point of this book is Peter Kilduffs careful review of the aces existing combat reports and private correspondence, as well as accounts by friends and foes. Another side of Billy Bishop is revealed in many letters to his fiancee (later wife) relating death-defying experiences while sharing tender inner thoughts. Drawing on some five decades of extensive, even-handed and thorough research into World War I aviation history, Kilduff examines a wealth of German sources for this in-depth study of the aces aerial exploits. Drawing on all his experience, the author sheds new light on Bishops air missions and combats, which so far are steeped in controversy. Such methodology provides as complete an account as possible. Billy Bishop VC Lone Wolf Hunter also serves as a valuable reference work, containing over seventy illustrations relating to Bishop and his adversaries, many previously unpublished.

Publisher: Grub Street
ISBN: 9781909808133
Number of pages: 192
Weight: 816 g
Dimensions: 246 x 170 x 23 mm


MEDIA REVIEWS
"eter Kilduff has done a superb job in slicing through the fog and controversy of nearly a century to produce a readable, objective account of Billy Bishop--the lone hunter"--Barrett Tillman
"Any fair-minded reader will set Kilduff's book down convinced that Billy Bishop was a genuine hero. All in all, he has produced an excellent work."--London Free Press
"Comparing letters Billy wrote to his then fianc e Margaret to records of downed German aircraft, Kilduff found the dates and descriptions of Billy's conquests matched German reports time after time, indicating Billy really was as good as his reputation. Kilduff found documented evidence the Germans knew who Billy was and they respected him for his talent and skills even as they feared him. "I just kept digging, digging and digging. I found proof of Billy's victories. Billy's combat reports were sparse, but honest. He shot down 72 German planes. More than any other allied target," said Kilduff. There were challenges when researching Billy Bishop. Not all German causalities were reported. He had to study the reporting policy on either side of the water. The author discovered the Germans didn't want to admit they were defeated very early on in the war, so they minimized their casualty numbers for over two years to maintain the support of German citizens."--Canadian Military Family
"Kildufff's latest biography considers the facts and leaves prejudices and jingoism out of the discussion. The latter is refreshing and makes this book a most valuable contribution to the arguments."--Over the Front
..".Kilduff is not the first to conduct such an inquiry into Bishop's claim of 72 victories, but his book is by far the best researched...expertly laid out, with photos of the aircraft mentioned by Bishop, particularly the German types. Kilduff has done a marvelous and subtle job of showing how a real hero became larger than life.--Aviation History
"This solidly constructed book by Peter Kilduff analyses the career of Canada's greatest ace. The author combines his work pouring over British and German records in addition to the many letters our hero wrote to his beloved wife and family....Peter Kilduff has done a very good job here... excellent photographs. Grub Street do these aviation histories very well and here's hoping they continue."--War History Online
"This is an indispensable work for anyone seeking to understand Billy Bishop's story. It will not be surpassed for a long time to come."--Steve Suddaby Past President of the World War One Historical Association
..".. easy to read and is extensively illustrated... gives an excellent account of Billy Bishop as an RFC pilot learning to fly in France in 1916 and his subsequent successful air fighting in 1917 and 1918...discusses and presents the known facts about Billy Bishop's claim that he was the victor in seventy-two aerial fights. It is highly recommended for use as a reference book by air historians but would also appeal to anyone interested in air fighting on the Western Front in the last three years of the Great War."--WWI History List
..".carefully researched biography of Billy Bishops sheds light on many questions surrounding Canada's most famous WWI hero...an indispensable work for anyone seeking to understand Billy Bishop's story. It will not be surpassed for a long time to come"--Listening Post
"Billy Bishop VC contains all of the qualities that have made Peter Kilduff's biographies such outstanding works. This is an indispensable work for anyone seeking to understand Billy Bishop's story."--World War One Illustrated, Summer 2018

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