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Royal Engineer-bookcover

By: Philip Thomas

Royal Engineer

Pages: 578 Ratings: 5.0
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As compelling as it is a delight to read, Royal Engineer is a military memoir that is truly a breath of fresh air and a ‘must’ read for anyone who has an interest in either the military or modern history, and for those who quite simply enjoy a good read.

Fascinating, honest, gripping, hard-hitting and never shying away from the truth, the authors passion for chronicling his and others’ past events and experiences becomes abundantly clear from the very beginning. The unique style of writing and the way in which detailed narratives are brilliantly incorporated make Royal Engineer a powerful and moving memoir. Emotions, opinions, positives, and negatives are freely shared with the reader to ensure that there is no sugar-coating on subjects and matters that are of a sensitive and topical nature in today’s world.

Be prepared for a reading experience like no other because Royal Engineer is filled with comprehensive and engaging narratives that will have the reader mesmerised from the very first page, and it is also a remarkable piece of writing because of the honest approach and evocative language the author adopts throughout.

Philip Thomas is a retired British Army warrant officer and published author.

In his memoir Royal Engineer, he shares his story and experiences of a fascinating 24-year military career that began on 6 June 1976, the day he first joined the Territorial Army in Llanelli, West Wales. In June 1977, he transferred across to the Regular Army and went on to serve for 23 years.

Totally absorbing from a historical perspective and fascinating in the way he shares numerous narratives and historical accounts, this is a fulfilling reading experience for anyone with a military background, or has an interest in modern history.

Ingeniously and creatively, the story centres on a journal written by the author during his six-month post-war operational tour of the Falkland Islands in 1983, whilst serving with 52 Field (Construction) Squadron, Royal Engineers.

From serving during the Cold War in the former Federal Republic of Germany to patrolling the streets of West Belfast in Northern Ireland at the time of The Troubles, and from qualifying as a Joint Service Mountain Expedition Leader in Norway to serving in post-war Bosnia, Royal Engineer has all the ingredients to make it a ‘must’ read.

Seeing US President Jimmy Carter at close hand in Berlin and catching sight of Rudolf Hess in Spandau Prison, exchanging letters with legendary comedian Eric Morecombe and confronting a black bear in the wilds of Canada’s Algonquin Provincial Park, these are just some of the many experiences the author shares in a style of writing that is both captivating and enchanting.

Customer Reviews
1 reviews
1 reviews
  • Irene Evans

    This book is quite simply delightful. It tells the story of the author's time serving with the British Army both during and after the Cold War, and had me thoroughly absorbed by its warmth, honesty and the passion with which experiences are shared by a writer who has an unique style of expressing himself. Packed with accounts covering a wide range of subjects and sharing his experiences and adventures around the world, just makes this an absorbing and fascinating reading experience. What I particularly like is the way he talks about others such as Sir Ernest Shackleton and the Gurkhas, and the interesting people he met during his career. There are also his candid accounts on sensitive topics such as why the Falklands and Bosnian wars were fought, the various roles of the British Army, concerns he holds over Britain's defence spending, his views on austerity and government decisions, and his frankness and courage when addressing geopolitical tensions and future British military capabilities. Beginning in 1976 and ending in 2000, Royal Engineer is a fantastic read. His wide-ranging knowledge is particularly impressive so definitely one for past and present members of the British Armed Forces, historians and book lovers alike.

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