This is Tom Neil's memoir, covering the years 1938 to 1942, when he went from a trainee pilot in the Royal Air Force (RAF) to a full-fledged fighter pilot who saw action in 2 of the most crucial, decisive battles of the Second World War: the Battle of Britain and the Siege of Malta.
At 95, Neil is one of the few remaining RAF combat veteran fighter aces of the War. He writes with a sure hand and can relate a story in a very engaging way. So much so, that the reader becomes swept up in Neil's descriptions of combat, the sensation of flying, the ambiance of the places where he served, and in the lives of the pilots and squadron personnel with whom he served. Indeed, in Appendix I of the book (titled 'What Happened After the Battle of Britain?'), Neil brings the reader up to date by shedding light on the subsequent careers of several of the officers and non-commissioned officers (NCOs) with whom he had varying relationships during his time with 249 Squadron, which emerged from the War as one of the RAF's most distinguished fighter squadrons. (Appendix 2 contains a copy of the logbook Neil kept throughout his service in the Battle of Britain from July to November 1940.)
"SCRAMBLE" is a wonderful book, which comes HIGHLY RECOMMENDED.