Captivating WWII Stories from the Inimitable WWII Author David Lowther

Explore the captivating WWII narratives penned by acclaimed WWII author, David Lowther. Immerse yourself in the poignant tales of ‘The Blue Pencil’ and the powerful accounts in ‘Liberating Belsen’. Experience gripping narratives that bring historical fiction to life like never before.

The Blue Pencil

A thrilling story of Nazi sympathy and appeasement at the highest levels of British government.

Recovering from the horrors of war and the Great Depression, Britain clings to dreams of peace as Europe slides towards Fascist dictatorship. Amidst a web of half-hidden alliances where rumour and reality interweave, Roger Martin begins his career in Fleet Street journalism. As he is drawn deeper into the murky world of international politics, he quickly realises that discovering the truth is only half of the challenge…

This compelling story follows an idealistic young journalist from his first steps along Fleet Street to the dark and dangerous heart of 1930s Nazi Germany as he uncovers the secrets kept from us by the British Government.

My novel, set between 1936 and 1939, has eerie echoes of today. From May 1937, Neville Chamberlain’s government restricted access to Downing Street press briefings to those newspapers and journals supportive of the  appeasement policies which were at the heart of the Prime Minister’s foreign policy.  Similarly, there have been suggestions, backed by hard evidence, that Boris Johnson’s team have not been altogether open in their dealings with newspapers and journals opposed to the UK leaving the European Union.

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While social media increasingly influences people’s views on just about everything, the daily and evening papers retain a strong influence. Thus, in the recent General Election, a majority of the newspapers supported the Tories.

Back in the 1930s, things were much worse and Chamberlain was aided and abetted by a senior civil servant as they attempted to control the written, sound and film media…

The Summer of ’39

Britain is under attack on two fronts. The IRA is mounting a bombing campaign on the mainland, and agents of the German Secret Service are collecting vital information to help them if war breaks out.

Investigative journalist Roger Martin unearths a link between the IRA and Nazi Germany and, with the help of two teenage boys and Scotland Yard’s Special Branch, uncovers two plots which threaten Britain’s preparations for war.

Meanwhile, Roger discovers that the Gestapo are blackmailing a young Jewish girl who has come to England through the Kinder Transport and is working in the service of a senior Foreign Office Diplomat. A daring operation is mounted to rescue her parents from under the noses of the Gestapo in Berlin.

The Summer of ’39 is a tale of spies, terrorists and blossoming young love—an epic adventure set in the final months of peace before WWII.

In the summer of 1939, that Britain stood on the verge of war for the second time in a quarter of a century. Britain was on the brink of another conflict with Germany despite the best efforts of Prime Minister Neville Chamberlain whose attempts to appease Adolf Hitler  had come to nought despite his very best efforts.

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The last few months before the outbreak were dominated by preparations for the  expected conflict. Against this background, a conspiracy was also coming together as Irish terrorists (the IRA) struck a deal with the Germans who provided them with weapons, explosives, safe houses and training.

This, then, is the background to my novel THE SUMMER OF ’39. It’s a work of fiction with heroes, villains, traitors and patriots – and love too…

Two Families at War

Two families, one escaping the horrors of Nazi Germany, the other anticipating the illicit opportunities that the blackout and blitz will bring.

As the bombs begin to fall on London, the paths of the two families cross with tragic consequences as their lives race towards a dangerous and thrilling climax.

Two Families at War tells of the battle between good and evil, set against the terror of the second Great Fire of London, December 1940.

One of the chief characters in this book is Richard Walker, an important part of the plot of The Blue Pencil and he provides the link between the two novels.  Others from my first novel do make fleeting appearances in Two Families at War.

In both books I tried to weave the fortunes of fictional characters into real events and this entailed a great deal of research because I was keen to be as historically accurate as possible.

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I wanted to look in some depth into the lives of Jewish people in Berlin as war approached and into tales of internment on the Isle of Man. I spoke extensively to Blitz survivors, both in North London and elsewhere in the UK. I visited all of the locations in the book, including a whole week spent on the Isle of Man (in fine weather!).

Research for Two Families at War took about six months and the actual writing a further six months.  If reading it gives you half as much pleasure I’ve had from writing it, I’ll be very satisfied.

Liberating Belsen

Remembering the Soldiers of the Durham Light Infantry…

Nothing, no amount of training, could have prepared a small group of soldiers from the Durham Light Infantry for what they discovered on 18 April 1945, less than a month before the end of WWII in Europe.

“Liberating Belsen” is a history of the Durham Light Infantry, focusing on their key role in the liberation of the notorious Bergen-Belsen Concentration Camp.

“No words of mine can aptly describe the conditions here.”

Jack Fairweather (internee). April 23rd. 1945

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Jack’s first letter continues with a detailed description of what the soldiers found when they entered Belsen and any reader would be full of admiration for the courage which these men showed in tackling these horrible tasks. Disease, especially typhus, was rampant and they must have been in some danger of contracting it. Each time they entered the camp, they were sprayed with DDT powder. 

Bravery can be shown in many more ways than on the battlefield and I wanted to pass on this story, which is nothing but the truth, to anyone who might ever doubt the horror of the thing called ‘National Socialism.’

Ordinary Heroes

It was war, but it was also all about family, love, courage, and finding peace when that war was over…

An epic tale of love and loss against a desperate fight for survival. 

From the rubble-strewn streets of London to the killing fields of Sicily, Esther and George’s love for one another faces endless challenges as both it and they struggle to survive during the Second World War. 

Esther, as a German Jewish refugee, finds herself interned on the Isle of Man while George struggles with self-doubt about his fitness as a combat soldier. Both suffer personal tragedy and the darkness and confusion of the V weapons attack on the capital brings further horror for Esther while George falls into the hands of the Gestapo.

Can they stay alive and, if they do, can they re-kindle their love after the bombs have stopped falling?

When we talk about heroes, we picture them as bold and brave – larger than life; not ordinary at all.

And yet, they are only people – flesh and blood like ourselves. Ordinary in many ways. But actually, that doesn’t make them ordinary at all. It makes them extraordinary.

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Because how do you face life that could end any moment, or care for people you might lose at any time. How do you keep hope and belief and love alive in the face of desperation and despair?

Ordinary Heroes picks up where The Summer of ’39 left off, following the stories of George and Esther, Mary and Joe. For them life is just beginning – and yet for some of them,  it could be about to end too.  

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© 2024 David Lowther – WWII Author