One of the bonuses of doing historical research is discovering books that I would not normally have chosen to read for pleasure. One such is the memoir, Sagittarius Rising, by Cecil Lewis, in which he recounts his adventures as a British Ace pilot during the First World War. His descriptions are sometimes lyrical, especially when he portrays the exhilaration of flying. It makes me long to soar above the clouds with him, and I hate flying! Fortunately, my characters can experience that in my stead. In turns amusing and tragic, the book is always fascinating. The really telling line is his statement that when the war was over, he was twenty years old.
I’m now interested in finding out more about Cecil Lewis, who died as recently as 1997. He flew with the RAF again in WW2, was a co-founder of the BBC, and won an Oscar for his joint-authorship of the screen adaptation of Pygmalion. Surely an interesting and perhaps charmed life!