Angels and Bandits by Brodie Curtis / #Extract #BlogTour @maryanneyarde @BrodieCurtis4


The Battle of Britain rages and two young RAF pilots from very different stations in life must somehow find common ground—and stay alive.

On the eve of World War II, working-class Eddy Beane is a flight instructor in London. He successfully completes dangerous espionage missions for Air Commodore Keith Park and takes on society-girl June Stephenson as a student. Her ex-fiancé, Dudley Thane, is also a flyer, but upper-class and Cambridge-educated. When the German Luftwaffe attacks England in 1940, Eddy and Dudley end up serving in the same Spitfire squadron. Aerial combat is in-tense, and both men show their skills and courage, but can they set aside jealousy and class differences to become fighting brothers for the defence of Britain?





An RAF pilot was often in his late teens or early twenties and without any combat experience when he was first scrambled during the Battle of Britain. Unsurprisingly, casualties mounted. But Air Chief Marshals Dowding and Park had to keep sending young men up because seeing RAF fighter planes every time German bombers were in the sky kept civilian morale up. But the toll on young pilots entering the fray was catastrophic. As the air battle raged, only one of two inexperienced, replacement pilots survived his first sortie.

Just think of a young man’s stomach-churning, mind-bending experience when flying his Spitfire at a mass of German bombers escorted by Messerschmitt fighters.

One of the young RAF pilots, Roger Hall, in his auto-biography, Clouds of Fear described his emotions upon hearing in his headset for the first time “Tally-ho,” the order to attack: “At one and the same time I felt both fear and elation, the one attempting to crush me, the other trying to raise to inexpressible heights.”*

Eddy Beane was a green Spitfire pilot in the early stages of the Battle of Britain during this aerial combat encounter in this excerpt from chapter 28 of ANGELS and BANDITS:


“Maida Leader to Maida Two,” Dobbers said. “Bandits, twelve o’clock.”

The enemy was no more than a black speck, barely visible through the Spitfire’s windscreen. Could have been a smashed bug. But in seconds, the speck grew to a bird shape, with gun pods under its wings. A Messerschmitt 109, barreling straight towards him.

“Maida Two to Maida Leader. I see them.”

“Deal with him. I’ll cover you. Tally ho!”

Eddy lined his Spitfire’s nose up with the enemy and pushed her to top speed. The Merlin engine’s voice rose from a whine to a scream and its vibrations shuddered through his body as the enemy plane filled his sight, bigger and bigger, like an expanding balloon. He switched on the firing toggle. His machine guns would spit out thirteen hundred rounds a minute. How could he miss? But as he fired, the 109’s yellow nose dived under him, apparently unscathed.

Eddy pulled back on the spade stick and throttle, forcing the Spitfire into a climbing turn. G forces slammed his helmet against the back of the seat. In the middle of the turn he felt the tail section bounce. The plane whipped into a spin to port and jerked him sideways so he couldn’t see the controls, only the horizon which spun in a kaleidoscope. The earth was corkscrewing towards him.

By pure instinct he floored the starboard rudder pedal, and the plane began to level. The sunlight dimmed and the temperature in the cockpit felt like it had dropped ten degrees. He had flown straight into a giant cirrocumulus cloud. The altimeter showed angels fifteen. There was no Messerschmitt, nothing to be seen but gray vapour.

He flew out of the cloud and Dobbers’s voice drawled in his earphones.

“Maida Leader to Maida Two. You missed the bastard. You O.K. there, Frenchy?”

“Yes. Okay. Over.”

“Your bandit dived away. But there’s more of them above. I’m going up to angels twenty-five. Get on my starboard wing, over.”

“Understood. Out.”

Eddy pulled his throttle back and his Spitfire climbed at more than two thousand feet per minute. Dobbers’s plane seemed to be suspended in the sky beside him, looking as though it was hardly moving. They shot through a layer of wispy clouds and out the other side. Three Spitfires of the White flight team came into view to starboard. Below them the gray and white puff ball clouds looked better suited for the walls of a nursery than a place of aerial combat. A strange sense of serenity came over him despite the adrenalin of the previous minute.

Dobbers said tersely, “Bandits to port!”

*Hall D.F.C., Roger, 1975, Clouds of Fear.

Thank you


About the Author

Raised in the Midwest, Brodie Curtis was educated as a lawyer and left the corporate world to embrace life in Colorado with his wife and two sons.

Curtis is the author of THE FOUR BELLS, a novel of The Great War, which is the product of extensive historical research, including long walks through the fields of Flanders, where much of the book’s action is set. His second novel, ANGELS AND BANDITS, takes his pro-tagonists into The Battle of Britain. Curtis is currently working on a novel set on a Missis-sippi Riverboat prior to the Civil War.

A lover of history, particularly American history and the World Wars, Curtis reviews histori-cal fiction for the Historical Novels Review and more than 100 of his published reviews and short takes on historical novels can be found on his website


Author Links






Amazon Author Page:




Book Links

Universal Link:

Barnes and Noble:


Apple Books:


2 gedachtes over “Angels and Bandits by Brodie Curtis / #Extract #BlogTour @maryanneyarde @BrodieCurtis4

Geef een reactie

Vul je gegevens in of klik op een icoon om in te loggen. logo

Je reageert onder je account. Log uit /  Bijwerken )

Facebook foto

Je reageert onder je Facebook account. Log uit /  Bijwerken )

Verbinden met %s