When I was a boy, some of my favorite books were biographies and autobiographies of the great World War I pilots. The "War to End All Wars" had only finished 50 years before my 10th birthday and the men who fought then were entering the age of reflection My grandfather was one of them. He endured the squalid existence of an infantyman in the trenches - years of standing aound in the mud enveloped by death. The war in the air seemed so much cleaner and more comfortable to me. Contempories felt the same way. In an understandable state of denial they romanticised the desperate and often cruel realities of air combat. Derek Robinson sets the record straight. His iconicalstic book War Story has the worst title but is the best written of all the novels of Robinson's I have read so far. War Story is set in 1916 just before the Battle of the Somme and follows the life of the fictional Hornet Squadron as they drink and die their way though the War. Impressive fiction, War Story captures what it actaully must of felt like to be a pilot then better than any dry description of fact.