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About the book
  • Published: 30 April 2020
  • ISBN: 9781473566637
  • Imprint: Transworld Digital
  • Format: EBook
  • Pages: 512

Harrier 809

Britain’s Legendary Jump Jet and the Untold Story of the Falklands War




The untold story of the Falklands War told through the exploits of the iconic 809 Squadron

When the Falkland Islands were invaded by Argentina in April 1982, Britain’s immediate response was to send a task force. But behind the pomp and bravado of its departure, a sober reality lurked. A mere 20 Sea Harriers operating from two aircraft carriers would take on the might of the Argentine air force, some 200 planes strong. The MOD estimated that within four days and against such formidable air power, half the harriers would likely be lost.

To reinforce that meagre force, and in just three weeks, the Navy formed, trained and equipped a brand new squadron from scratch. Not since the Second World War had so much been expected of such a small band of pilots. Their home would be a container ship converted into a makeshift carrier. 809 Naval Air Squadron was born.

Other covert operations mounted by MI6 and the SAS in Latin America would provide vital intelligence to protect the task force from attack but in the vanguard of the conflict it would be the Sea Harriers of the 809 whose heroics in the South Atlantic which would become legendary.

With characteristic insider knowledge and in thrilling detail, Rowland White tells the story of those amazing exploits - the dogfights, the twenty-three kills, the deadly Exocet attacks, the ejections –demonstrating just why the Harrier is mentioned in the same breath as the Spitfire, the Lancaster and the Vulcan and is destined to join them in the ranks of our most celebrated aeronautical achievements.

  • Pub date: 30 April 2020
  • ISBN: 9781473566637
  • Imprint: Transworld Digital
  • Format: EBook
  • Pages: 512

About the Author

Rowland White

Rowland White is the author of four critically acclaimed works of aviation history: Vulcan 607, Phoenix Squadron, Storm Front and Into The Black, as well as a compendium of all things aviation, The Big Book Of Flight. His writing has appeared in a variety of national magazines and newspapers including the Guardian, Daily Mail and Esquire magazine.

Born and brought up in Cambridge, Rowland studied Modern History at Liverpool University. He has held a private pilot’s licence since 1998.

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Praise for Harrier 809

“This is utterly brilliant: a fantastically exciting book about those amazing Harrier jets in the Falklands War but so much more besides. White has a richly drawn cast of unforgettable characters ... this really does read like the best kind of thriller. His best book yet.”

James Holland

“Utterly thrilling and totally absorbing. White conveys brilliantly the spirit of a great aircraft - and the men who flew it”

Patrick Bishop

“Rowland White has done it again! A compelling, fast-paced narrative that thrusts us into a fascinating cockpit-view of the Falklands War. Harrier 809 provides a true window into a conflict that shaped the modern path of Argentina and the United Kingdom; a "must read" for serious military aviation enthusiasts and historians alike!”

Dan Hampton

“Rowland White has scored again. Harrier 809 reads like a fast-paced military adventure novel only better because every word is true. White has brought us an up-close, inside-the-cockpit saga of a band of heroes in the Falklands air war. Riveting.”

Robert Gandt

“Set against the broader context of the Falklands War, Harrier 809 brings the squadron’s story to life in fine and highly readable style.”

Garth Ennis

“Deeply researched and written with Rowland White's trademark brio, Harrier 809 is the thrilling story of the ‘forgotten' Sea Harrier squadron of the Falklands War, one that arrived late to the party yet played a key role in Britain’s unlikely victory. A superb book.”

Saul David

“A compelling narrative, brought to life through vivid personal accounts and told in the author's usual lucid style”

Soldier

“White writes narrative history like a novelist ... a story of politics, invention, determination and courage.”

Navy News

“White writes narrative history like a novelist ... a story of politics, invention, determination and courage.”

Navy News


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