Patrick Bishop is a lecturer in the School of Law at Swansea University.
When American fighter pilot William Ash’s plane was shot down over France in 1942, he was captured by German forces and placed in a Nazi prison camp. Ash, bolstered by the grit and ingenuity he developed during his upbringing in Texas during the Great Depression, would spend the rest of the war defying the Nazis and striving to escape from every POW camp in which they incarcerated him. His thrilling exploits made him the inspiration for Steve McQueen's character in The Great Escape.
Ash’s is a saga full of incident and high drama, climaxing in a breakout through a tunnel dug in the latrines of the Oflag XXIB prison camp in Poland—a great untold episode of World War II. Alongside William Ash is a cast of fascinating characters, including Roger Bushell, who would go on to lead the Great Escape, and Paddy Barthropp, a dashing Battle of Britain pilot who became Ash’s best friend and shared many of his adventures.
The Cooler King is the uplifting story of one man’s extraordinary resilience in the face of impossible odds, and stands as an inspirational testament to the invincible spirit of liberty.
Militant Zionist Avraham Stern believed he was destined to be the Jewish liberator of British Palestine. As the ringleader of the infamous Stern Gang, also known as Lehi, he masterminded a series of high-profile terrorist attacks in pursuit of his dream. On the run from British authorities who'd put a bounty on his head, Stern was hiding in an attic in Tel Aviv when he was killed by Assistant Superintendent Geoffrey Morton, a British colonial policeman assigned to capture him.
Morton claimed Stern was trying to escape. But witnesses insisted he was executed in cold blood. His controversial death inspired a cult of martyrdom that gave new life to Lehi, helping to destroy hopes of a detente between the British, the Arabs, and the Jews.
The Reckoning is the story of Patrick Bishop's quest to discover the truth. Based on extensive research—including access to Morton's private archive and eyewitness interviews—it recounts this seismic event in full, without bias, placing it within the context of its turbulent time. Bishop's gripping, groundbreaking narrative brings to life two men similar in ambition and dedication, chronicles the events that led to their fatal meeting, and explores how the impact of Stern's death reverberated through the final years of British rule and the birth of Israel.