100 books like Yesterday's Gone

By N.J. Crisp,

Here are 100 books that Yesterday's Gone fans have personally recommended if you like Yesterday's Gone. Shepherd is a community of 10,000+ authors and super readers sharing their favorite books with the world.

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Book cover of Pathfinder

Sean Feast Author Of Halton Boys: True Tales from Pilots and Ground Crew Proud to be Called 'Trenchard Brats'

From my list on British Bomber Command in World War 2.

Why am I passionate about this?

Sean Feast has been a journalist and PR professional for more than 35 years and is a Director of a global marketing consultancy, Gravity Global. He is the author and co-author of more than 20 books on Bomber Command (seven with Grub St) with a particular specialism in Pathfinder Force. He co-authored the books that went with the opening of the Bomber Command Memorial and the International Bomber Command Centre. He is a Trustee of the RAF Pathfinder Archive.

Sean's book list on British Bomber Command in World War 2

Sean Feast Why did Sean love this book?

My personal favourite is the book by the man himself – Pathfinder by Air Vice Marshal Donald Bennett. No-one could be better placed to chart the history and success of PFF than the C-in-C 8 Group himself, and his brilliantly direct style and merciless assassination of some of his contemporaries makes me wince and smile every time I read it. His thinly veiled attacks on 5 Group, 617 Squadron and Sir Ralph Cochrane (whose name is misspelled throughout!) are well-worth reading, though he is rather economical with the truth on occasion to support his own arguments and prejudices. If you never knew about the conflict between Bennett and Cochrane, and how betrayed Bennett felt by Harris when the latter supported the 5 Group method of target marking later in the war, this will open your eyes. And see if you don’t laugh out loud as I did when Bennett says…

By Don Bennett,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Pathfinder as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Air Vice-Marshal Don Bennett was one of the most outstanding figures of the 2nd World War and the creator and leader of the legendary Pathfinder Force of 8 Group. His record as a brilliant pilot and navigator made him the obvious choice as leader of the Pathfinders, the elite force designed to carry out pioneering target-marking and precision-bombing of Nazi-occupied Europe. From the date of its inception almost every RAF Main Force attack was led by the Pathfinders. Night after night they spearheaded Bomber Command's assault on major German targets using increasingly sophisticated devices including radar, to increase the efficiency…


Book cover of Eighth Passenger: A Flight of Recollection & Discovery

Sean Feast Author Of Halton Boys: True Tales from Pilots and Ground Crew Proud to be Called 'Trenchard Brats'

From my list on British Bomber Command in World War 2.

Why am I passionate about this?

Sean Feast has been a journalist and PR professional for more than 35 years and is a Director of a global marketing consultancy, Gravity Global. He is the author and co-author of more than 20 books on Bomber Command (seven with Grub St) with a particular specialism in Pathfinder Force. He co-authored the books that went with the opening of the Bomber Command Memorial and the International Bomber Command Centre. He is a Trustee of the RAF Pathfinder Archive.

Sean's book list on British Bomber Command in World War 2

Sean Feast Why did Sean love this book?

My favourite autobiography is The Eighth Passenger by Miles Tripp. First published in 1969, the book charts the author’s journey to re-discover his former crewmates 30-years after they had last met and flown operations. He seeks to discover how they felt both then and now, and whether his experiences were shared. What really comes across is how extraordinarily ‘ordinary’ they all were, and yet how they gelled into an expert crew. One of their numbers is black, a rarity at the time and adding a certain significance today, and another proves particularly elusive such that you wonder whether he will ever be found. The author very cleverly weaves in the past and the present, their experiences as a Lancaster crew, and what happened after demob and a return to civilian life. It’s a very intelligent book that will ultimately lead you to the identity of The Eighth Passenger.

By Miles Tripp,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Eighth Passenger as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

This is a first-hand account of World War II combat-flying, enhanced by the addition of a series of notes in which the author reappraises, in the light of information learned since the first edition was published, some of the events described and the views expressed. Seven young men, brought together by chance from, almost literally, the four corners of the earth, wake up day after day - or are woken up in the middle of the night - fully aware that the odds on their seeing the sun rise again are not good. The author has been a novelist for…


Book cover of Night Bombing

Sean Feast Author Of Halton Boys: True Tales from Pilots and Ground Crew Proud to be Called 'Trenchard Brats'

From my list on British Bomber Command in World War 2.

Why am I passionate about this?

Sean Feast has been a journalist and PR professional for more than 35 years and is a Director of a global marketing consultancy, Gravity Global. He is the author and co-author of more than 20 books on Bomber Command (seven with Grub St) with a particular specialism in Pathfinder Force. He co-authored the books that went with the opening of the Bomber Command Memorial and the International Bomber Command Centre. He is a Trustee of the RAF Pathfinder Archive.

Sean's book list on British Bomber Command in World War 2

Sean Feast Why did Sean love this book?

My favourite reference book is another wartime publication, the little-known Night Bombing by Hector Hawton (who also wrote The Men who Fly). First published in 1944, the tiny volume looks at the history and principles of air bombing, including the technical aspects, and goes on to explore methods of attack, targets, and the effectiveness of enemy defences including the ballistic characteristics of various flak guns. It feels and reads like a contemporary handbook for bomber captains, and the fact that my copy still bears the signature of the original owner, a Flight Lieutenant with the DFC, probably tells you everything you need to know about its authenticity and importance.

By Hector Hawton,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Night Bombing as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Night Bombing


Book cover of The Strategic Air Offensive against Germany 1939-1945

Sean Feast Author Of Halton Boys: True Tales from Pilots and Ground Crew Proud to be Called 'Trenchard Brats'

From my list on British Bomber Command in World War 2.

Why am I passionate about this?

Sean Feast has been a journalist and PR professional for more than 35 years and is a Director of a global marketing consultancy, Gravity Global. He is the author and co-author of more than 20 books on Bomber Command (seven with Grub St) with a particular specialism in Pathfinder Force. He co-authored the books that went with the opening of the Bomber Command Memorial and the International Bomber Command Centre. He is a Trustee of the RAF Pathfinder Archive.

Sean's book list on British Bomber Command in World War 2

Sean Feast Why did Sean love this book?

There is really only one book that is essential reading, and that’s the Official History of the Strategic Air Offensive against Germany 1939-1945 by Charles Webster and Noble Frankland. First published in 1961, the history, over three volumes with a further dedicated volume of appendices, is a true Magnum Opus, a very detailed account of Bomber Command’s part in the war, from the first, costly daylight attacks on enemy shipping to the final onslaught when the Command could regularly lay on a force well in excess of 1,000 bombers over Germany virtually at will. Brilliantly researched and wonderfully written, the read is well worth the investment in time and money.

By Noble Frankland, Sir Charles Webster,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Strategic Air Offensive against Germany 1939-1945 as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

The theme of this first of four volumes of the official British history of the Second World War devoted to the RAF's strategic bomber offensive against Germany is in its sub-title 'Preparation'. Beginning with the lessons learned from air bombing in its infancy during the Great War, the authors divide their book into three parts: strategy; operations; appreciations and results. No aspect of Britain's role in the war, as the authors acknowledge in their preface, has been and remains more controversial than the air war against German cities. These books, the product of ten years' research, are an essential repository…


Book cover of A Thousand Shall Fall

Mark Zuehlke Author Of Juno Beach: Canada's D-Day Victory -- June 6, 1944

From my list on Canadians on their World War 2 service.

Why am I passionate about this?

Since the mid-1990s, I’ve written thirteen volumes in The Canadian Battles Series—more than a million words on the battles, campaigns, and experiences of my nation’s army during World War II. I started this because Canadians were usually no more than a footnote in the WWII histories written by American and British historians, despite having been the third-largest army serving alongside their armies in Italy and Northwest Europe. Realizing that the Canadian story would only be told if we wrote it ourselves, I embraced the task and continue to do so thirty years later.

Mark's book list on Canadians on their World War 2 service

Mark Zuehlke Why did Mark love this book?

As a pilot with Bomber Command, Murray Peden flew thirty combat missions and was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross. While many bomber veterans have written solid memoirs to their experiences, this book is also a fine examination of the Bomber Command Campaign. To my knowledge, no other memoir of Bomber Command garnered the praise of its British Commander, Royal Air Force Marshal, Sir Arthur (Bomber) Harris. “I consider it not only the best and most true to life ‘war’ book I’ve ever read about this war, but the best about all the wars of my lifetime,” Harris wrote. Not only does it relate the story of Bomber Command operations, but it authentically captures the flavour of life experienced by its aircrews both during missions and in the downtime between. Peden was a gifted writer with a mastery of language that combined with a keen ability as a witness to war…

By Murray Peden,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked A Thousand Shall Fall as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

One of the finest war memoirs ever written.

During World War II, Canada trained tens of thousands of airmen under the British Commonwealth Air Training Plan. Those selected for Bomber Command operations went on to rain devastation upon the Third Reich in the great air battles over Europe, but their losses were high. German fighters and anti-aircraft guns took a terrifying toll. The chances of surviving a tour of duty as a bomber crew were almost nil.

Murray Peden's story of his training in Canada and England, and his crew's operations on Stirlings and Flying Fortresses with 214 Squadron, has…


Book cover of Keeping Watch: A WAAF in Bomber Command

Helena P. Schrader Author Of Moral Fibre: A Bomber Pilot's Story

From my list on R.A.F. Bomber Crews.

Why am I passionate about this?

As a child, I heard tales of my uncle Ken, an RCAF Halifax navigator, who was shot down over Berlin in January 1944. As an adult, I lived in Berlin while earning a PhD in History and left roses on my uncle’s grave. Now, I am retired, and with the noise of earning a living silenced, I can hear the voices of those who want their story told. Among them are men from Bomber Command who feel they have been ignored and disparaged in fictional writing about WWII. I hope to correct that injustice and depict them as people rather than symbols or victims.

Helena's book list on R.A.F. Bomber Crews

Helena P. Schrader Why did Helena love this book?

The WAAF played a crucial role in the RAF generally and in Bomber Command particularly, yet far too little has been written about or by them. This is the rare exception.

As Ms. Beck says in her introduction, the book captures not the exceptional, unusual, or heroic, but rather the everyday life of WAAF serving at the operational stations of RAF Bomber Command.

What I liked best about this book was the complete absence of melodrama. It is a straightforward, honest account full of ‘trivia’ that makes it a treasure trove of detailed information — something invaluable to the novelist!

By Pip Beck,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Keeping Watch as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

A sensitively written true story by an RAF Bomber Command wartime R/T operator who talked down the crews on their return from operations, met them off duty, and often mourned their loss within days.


Book cover of One Wing High: Halifax Bomber - the Navigator's Story

Helena P. Schrader Author Of Moral Fibre: A Bomber Pilot's Story

From my list on R.A.F. Bomber Crews.

Why am I passionate about this?

As a child, I heard tales of my uncle Ken, an RCAF Halifax navigator, who was shot down over Berlin in January 1944. As an adult, I lived in Berlin while earning a PhD in History and left roses on my uncle’s grave. Now, I am retired, and with the noise of earning a living silenced, I can hear the voices of those who want their story told. Among them are men from Bomber Command who feel they have been ignored and disparaged in fictional writing about WWII. I hope to correct that injustice and depict them as people rather than symbols or victims.

Helena's book list on R.A.F. Bomber Crews

Helena P. Schrader Why did Helena love this book?

This a rare autobiography about flying in RAF Bomber Command from the perspective of a navigator rather than a pilot.

Also unusual among books of this nature, the author flew in the Halifax rather than the Lancaster. The book opens as the author prepares to report for induction into the RAF and follows him through initial, advanced, and operational training, then into the war and the early post-war period as well.

Although written long after the events depicted, the author relied on his diaries, letters, and logbooks when putting it together, so it does not feel distant from events or didactic.

The author does not focus on the darkness but instead tells his story in an easy, anecdotal fashion. His voice and personality shine through, engaging you easily. 

Book cover of The Devil's Decade

Emily Hourican Author Of Mummy Darlings: A Glorious Guinness Girls Novel

From my list on Britain before WWII that show true daily life.

Why am I passionate about this?

When I started researching the 1930s in Britain, I realised that I had only ever considered the period from the Irish perspective, as the tail-end of the long battle for independence. I had always seen Britain in the role of oppressor: Rich, where Ireland was poor; powerful where Ireland was weak. As I read more, a new picture of Britain began to emerge. The Great Depression, the numbers of people unemployed, the children with rickets and scurvy due to malnutrition. And with those things, the rise of socialism and fascism, both expressing the same dissatisfaction with life. I wanted to know more. And so I went looking for books to teach me.

Emily's book list on Britain before WWII that show true daily life

Emily Hourican Why did Emily love this book?

This is a history of the decade that was published in 1973. What it lacks in the perspective of greater hindsight, it gains in the energy and immediacy that Cockburn brings to the subject. It feels vivid and urgent, and conveys the sense of fear and alarm of that time very well. Parts are almost an eyewitness account. In my reading of history books that deal with the time, this stood out as being accessible and lively. 

By Claud Cockburn,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Devil's Decade as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.


Book cover of Sidetracked

Barbara Carroll Roberts Author Of Nikki on the Line

From my list on girls who love sports.

Why am I passionate about this?

I was a very active kid – the kind of kid who was constantly told to sit still and be quiet. Growing up in the 1960s, I had few opportunities to engage in athletics, other than neighborhood games of tag and kick-the-can. But when I got to high school, our school district had just begun offering competitive sports for girls. Finally, my energy and athletic ability were appreciated (at least by my coaches and teammates). So I guess it was inevitable that when I began writing books for young readers, I would start with a book about a girl who loves sports.

Barbara's book list on girls who love sports

Barbara Carroll Roberts Why did Barbara love this book?

Although the main character in this warm and funny book is a boy, I include it in my list of favorite books about girls who love sports because the best athlete in this story of a middle-school cross country team is a girl. She’s the team member all the other kids depend on. The team member who pushes Joseph Friedman – a boy with attention challenges, innumerable phobias, and no athletic “gifts” – to keep trying. She just won’t let Joseph give up. I love the relationships between the teammates in this book. And I love the way Asher shows that in running – as in life – winning doesn’t always mean coming in first. It means trying to do just a little bit better each time you step onto the track.

By Diana Harmon Asher,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Sidetracked as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

ABA Indies Introduce Book
ALA Notable Book

"This is a splendid novel that I read in one sitting. . . . You will cheer when this kid embraces 'Do your best' and shows it to be a ringing call to nothing less than Triumph." -Gary D. Schmidt, Printz Honor winner and two-time Newbery Honor winner "Diana Harmon Asher tells an entertaining story about a boy picking his way through the potholes and pitfalls of puberty, with a little help from his friends." -Richard Peck, Newbery Medal winner
"Just read it! Diana Harmon Asher has written a witty, observant, and sensitive…


Book cover of In Command of History: Churchill Fighting and Writing the Second World War

Steven Casey Author Of The War Beat, Pacific: The American Media at War Against Japan

From my list on understand WW2.

Why am I passionate about this?

Steven Casey is Professor in International History at the LSE. A specialist in US foreign policy, he is the author of ten books, including Cautious Crusade, which explored American attitudes toward Nazi Germany during World War II; Selling the Korean War, which won both the Truman Book Award and the Neustadt Prize for best book in American Politics; and When Soldiers Fall which also won the Neustadt Prize. In 2017, he published War Beat, Europe: The American Media at War against Nazi Germany, which won the American Journalism Historians Association 2018 book of the year, the panel judging it “a landmark work.” 

Steven's book list on understand WW2

Steven Casey Why did Steven love this book?

“Another book on Churchill?” asks Reynolds on the first page. “Can there be anything new to say?” Yes, is the emphatic answer. Churchill’s magisterial memoir shaped how many readers came to understand World War II. In this equally magisterial book, Reynolds dissects how Churchill wrote his memoir, exploring how the politics of the post-war era were often as important in shaping Churchill’s judgments as the events of the war itself. Methodologically sophisticated and elegantly written.

By David Reynolds,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked In Command of History as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Winston Churchill fought the World War II twice over-first as Prime Minister during the war, and then later as the war's premier historian. From 1948-54, he published six volumes of memoirs. They secured his reputation and shaped our understanding of the conflict to this day. Drawing on the drafts of Churchill's manuscript as well as his correspondence from the period, David Reynolds masterfully reveals Churchill the author. Reynolds shows how the memoirs were censored by the British government to conceal state secrets, and how Churchill himself censored them to avoid offending current world leaders. This book illuminates an unjustly neglected…


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