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In 1939, young English naval signalman Geoffrey Holder-Jones began his career by surviving a German mine attack in the Thames estuary. World War II took him as naval officer to Iceland, the Norwegian island of Spitsbergen, and the United States. Commissioned as a naval officer and given command of his own ship, Jones then patrolled the waters off Canada and Newfoundland before returning to Britain in 1944. This true story, written on the basis of personal conversations and a scrapbook entrusted to the author 60 years after the war, illuminates one of the great achievements of the war the beating of the German U-boat blockade of the American coast by squadrons of Allied ships that were little more than motley collections of armed trawlers and whalers. With a sense of humor and decency that sustained him through the ordeals of convoy duty in the Arctic Ocean, Signalman Jones has related his story to Tim Parker with vivid observations and an eye for the absurd.
- Sheridan House, November 2010
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