In Foreign Fields (Secret Soldiers of World War 1 - Book 1) by David Hough
Publication date: 17 December 2013
Format: Amazon Kindle
(Please note: you don't need a Kindle reader to read this book - you can download it from Amazon onto your computer/ipad/iphone)
August 1914. The Great War is only just beginning and already things are looking bad. The British Expeditionary Force is retreating in disarray from the Battle of Mons. But, in the midst of the confusion, two British officers on a top secret mission are moving forward, ready to cross the German lines.
To complete his assignment, Captain Victor Wendel knows his life will depend on his cunning and ingenuity as much as his courage. He doesn’t, however, know that he is also at the mercy of a double agent.
Lieutenant Charles DeBoise, a reluctant recruit to British Intelligence, is sent after Wendel to assist him. Will he reach Wendel before the double agent sabotages the mission? And will they be able to complete their task before it’s too late?
To read an extract, please go to David's website.
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What the readers say
"The author's superb story-telling skills kept me entertained - and guessing - til the end. I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book."
"A great First World War story from an unusual angle"
"David Hough's novel mixes good storytelling within a framework of real events."
"This is a well written story and the author has obviously done his homework and researched the facts. Looking forward to the next one in the series."
"The author has done a wonderful job in researching World War I and writing such a gripping story."
"There are twists and turns that keep you guessing til the end and at the same time you learn about the early days of World War I."
David's thoughts on In Foreign Fields
How would you describe this book?
First and foremost this is a war thriller. But it is also a bit of a history lesson. Most people’s main impression of that war is coloured by images of the long lines of muddy trenches. But it wasn’t at all like that in the first few weeks when the German High Command’s Schlieffen plan looked like it might work.
Additionally, most people’s thoughts tend to centre upon the military conflicts. I have aimed to make my readers aware of the appalling brutality inflicted upon the Belgian civilian population. I hope it works as a thriller, and I also hope it will widen the readers' perceptions of that war.
Where did you get the idea for this book?
When my wife and I visited the Tyne Cot military cemetery near Ypres, we were both deeply moved by it. I came away wanting to write about the war that caused so many casualties, but I also wanted it to be different from other war stories. I later read about the fledgling Secret Intelligence Service and decided that the key characters in my book would by British spies working behind the German lines. To add extra tension to the matter, I made one of the main characters an English officer with a German father.
Did the story end up where you thought it would when you started?
Yes. I always work out my plots in advance so I knew from the start what would happen as the novel progressed. The only thing that surprised me when I got to the end was the amount of emotion I was able to instill into my characters. My two main characters found themselves sensitively challenged by some of the situations in which I put them. For me, their reactions worked better than expected.
Which character in the book did you enjoy writing the most?
It should have been one of those two main characters, but it wasn’t. It was the a little Irish private I brought in as a contrast to the two officers. He’s a likeable rogue, a petty criminal who has the skills the other two needed to get them out of trouble. I was able to engineer a bit of amusement with him and I’d like to further develop his character in later books.