A Higher Call: An Incredidible True Story of Combat and Chivalry in the War – Torn Skies of World War II, by Adam Makos
Authors: Larry Alexander, Adam Makos
Nominations: Goodreads Choice Awards Best History & Biography
Description: Five days before Christmas 1943, a badly damaged American bomber struggled to fly over wartime Germany. At its controls was a twenty-one-year-old pilot. Half his crew lay wounded or dead. It was their first mission. Suddenly, a sleek, dark shape pulled up on the bomber’s tail – a German Messerschmitt fighter. Worse, the German pilot was an ace, a man able to destroy the American bomber in the squeeze of a trigger. What happened next would defy imagination and later be called ‘the most incredible encounter between enemies in World War II.’ This is the true story of the two pilots whose lives collided in the skies that day: the American – Second Lieutenant Charlie Brown, a former farm boy from West Virginia who came to captain a B-17 – and the German – Second Lieutenant Franz Stigler, a former airline pilot from Bavaria who sought to avoid fighting in World War II.
Purchase: Amazon Books
This is an amazing story of honor, chivalry and courage that took place during WWII. I’ve always had the schoolboy fascination with WWII, part of growing up with films like, Tora, Tora, Tora!, The Great Escape, Midway, etc. I had models of tanks, ships and fighter planes dog fighting from my ceiling.
My fascination carried into adulthood with Saving Private Ryan and Band of Brothers. I can’t remember, but I think I saw A Higher Call on a book list somewhere. I didn’t know much about the story, save for the description you read above, but was surprised by how much the story effected me and stuck with me.
Makos does a great job of setting the story up and there is so much more than fateful encounter. By the end of the book, you will find yourself in tears over the outcome.
This is a solid read for just about anyone. At the least, you will have educated yourself on some of the history of WWII. It is good to know that even when the world seems to be falling apart, that there are people who live with honor and by a higher call.