Castle of the Eagles: Escape from Mussolini's Colditz
High in the Tuscan hills above Florence, an elaborate medieval castle, converted to a POW camp on Mussolini's personal orders, holds one of the most illustrious groups of prisoners in the history of warfare.
The dozen or so British and Commonwealth senior officers includes three knights of the realm and two VCs. The youngest of them is 48, the oldest 63. One is missing a hand and an eye. Another suffers with a gammy hip. Against insuperable odds, these extraordinary middle-aged POWs plan a series of daring escape attempts, culminating in a complex tunnel deep beneath the castle.
One rainswept night in March 1943, six men will burst from the earth beyond the castle's curtain wall and slip away. By assorted means, the three Brits, two New Zealanders and a half-Belgian aristocrat will attempt to make it to neutral Switzerland, over 200 miles away.
'Another excellent example of [Felton's] growing library of sensational true war stories.' 'Felton really brings this tale of incredible wartime daring and heroism to life.' 'A remarkable story of wartime bravery and escape.' '[A] stunning true story.' 'Keeps up the suspense to the end.' 'A gripping account.' 'An extraordinary, and largely forgotten wartime story -- brought back to life in this Boys' Own account.' 'This tale romps along, tumbling over itself with excitement.'
Mark Felton has written over a dozen books on World War Two, including most recently, Castle of the Eagles, The Sea Devils and Zero Night, an account of a mass POW escape, described as 'a thundering good read' by History of War magazine. His Japanese Gestapo was named 'Best Book of 2009' by the Japan Times. He also writes regularly for publications including Military History Monthly and World War II. After a decade spent working in Shanghai, he now lives in Colchester. Visit markfelton.co.uk.