Sarasota, FL, September 24, 2019 --(PR.com
)-- Suncoast Publishing and Author Guide announce the release of "Breaking Point, A Novel of the Battle of Britain" by John Rhodes.
It is August, 1940. Hitler’s triumphant Third Reich has crushed all Europe - except Britain. As Hitler launches a massive aerial assault, only the heavily outnumbered British RAF and the iron will of Winston Churchill can stop him. The fate of Western civilization teeters in the balance.
Johnnie Shaux, a Spitfire fighter pilot, knows that the average life expectancy of a pilot is a mere five hours of operational flying time. Sooner or later his luck will run out. Yet he must constantly summon up the fortitude to fly into conditions in which death is all but inevitable and continue to do so until the inevitable occurs...
Meanwhile, Eleanor Rand, a WAAF staff officer in RAF headquarters, is struggling to find her role in a man’s world and to make a contribution to the battle. She studies the control room maps that track the ebb and flow of conflict, the aerial thrust and parry, and begins to see the glimmerings of a radical strategic breakthrough...
"Breaking Point" is based on the actual events of six days in the historic Battle of Britain. The story alternates between Johnnie, face to face with the implacable enemy; and Eleanor, in 11 Group headquarters, using "zero sum" game theory to evolve a strategic model of the battle.
"Breaking Point" is available through booksellers and public libraries everywhere.www.amazon.com/gp/product/
What people reviewers are saying:
“Based on the historical accuracy of the Battle of Britain but with fictional elements, the narrative's focus alternates between the two protagonists, Shaux and Eleanor. Prominent figures factor in primarily to Eleanor’s story, and the details of the fighting are true to records. The use of the two fictional leads allows for a strong balance of militaristic action and workplace tension and drama. Those who are new to learning about the air combat of the Second World War can consult the appendices at the end of the book, which offer detailed information about the various planes, figures, and speeches that so prominently define this era of history. A good story in its own right, the historical power and significance of this book’s backdrop lead to a read that is fast-paced, dangerous, and addictive.”
- US Review of Books
“Rhodes memorably portrays Europe’s terrifying crisis. It’s easy to forget just how grim the future seemed. Also, the slowly brewing romance between Johnnie and Eleanor is touchingly drawn, especially Johnnie’s strenuously concealed existential despondency. A gripping, emotionally bracing account of a critical moment in history.”
"John Rhodes’ brilliantly written historical novel centers on a Spitfire pilot and a mathematical genius struggling through WWII’s Battle of Britain and their own lack of personal confidence. This engaging history laced with personal struggle is spiced with well-researched and thrilling aerial combat scenes; for example: Within seconds, the neat formations had unraveled into a whirling kaleidoscope of fighters, wheeling, turning, climbing, diving, rolling, intersected by streams of tracer, locked in a furious dogfight.
"Despite the action, the story never sacrifices character development and an appreciation of the humanness of those who serve as minor pieces in the chess game played by the masters of war. Readers will also be pleasantly surprised by how the author flawlessly - even captivatingly - weaves mathematics into a war/love story.
"As a bonus, Rhodes’ 24-page 'Authors Notes' contain facts even the most dedicated WWII aficionado will find new and interesting. This is a WWII novel to savor."
Meet John Rhodes
John Rhodes was born in World War II while his father was serving at an RAF Fighter Command airfield in southern England. After the war he grew up in London, where, he says, the shells of bombed-out buildings "served as our adventure playgrounds."
Rhodes graduated from Cambridge University where he studied history. His career in international banking took him all around the world. After many years living on the West Side of Manhattan, Rhodes now lives in Wilmington, North Carolina. "My traveling days are over," he says.
Rhodes rues the decline of history as a required field of study. "If you don’t know where you came from, you don’t understand why you’re here, let alone where you going to be next." Reflecting Rhodes’ search for historical accuracy, the battles in Breaking Point conform to the actual performance specifications of the aircraft, down to the details of their rate of climb and turning circles.
He has written two Thomas Ford detective novels and is busy on a sequel to Breaking Point. He inherited a love of old-fashioned detective stories, "cozies," from his father, particularly by the great generation of women writers including Agatha Christie and, in his words, the "immortal Dorothy L Sayers." Sayers’ fictional protagonist Harriet Vane is, Rhodes confesses, an archetype for his character Eleanor Rand in "Breaking Point."http://johnrhodesbooks.com/