During the Second World War, Roald Dahl served in the RAF and he drew on his own experiences as a fighter pilot. There are 10 stories in all. At a first brief reading, I find that the war stories are not so easy to digest. If you really want to understand it, I think it is better to re-read the story twice to get a better understanding. Some of the stories does leave an impact. There are not so much of a fanciful writing, but the way of writing sounds genuine and from the heart.
I have taken a few stories out to share.
1) They Shall Not Grow Old
This is a story in which a pilot appears to visit the land of the dead during one of the flights. However, it is a bit eerie in that the way he died during the last flight, he mentioned the same last words as when he visited the land of the dead the previous time.
2) Beware of the Dog
A British pilot flew home injured, wakes up in hospital, his injuries are treated and he is told he is in Brighton. However the hospital is not quite as it should be. The water is hard, but he remembers from his schooldays that the water in Brighton is soft. He hears the sounds of German airplanes engine flying overheads, when in England, they would be shot immediately.
Finally, he looks out of the window and sees a sign which says ‘Garde Au Chien’ – French for ‘Beware of the Dog’, and he realises that he is in France. Shortly after this, the nurse tells him that someone from the Royal Air Force is here to see him. However, knowing he is in France, and a prisoner of war,Peter refuses to tell the man anything more than his name, rank and number.