Sara Knox was born in Wellington, New Zealand, and now lives and writes in Australia. She is the author of Murder: a Tale of Modern American Life, and is an Associate Professor in the the Writing and Society Research Group and the School of Humanities and Languages at the University of Western Sydney.
376 pages Paperback, 21 x 14.8 cm Published October 2007 ISBN 9781920882280
The Orphan Gunner is an unconventional romance set in bomber command in Lincolnshire during the Second World War.
Evelyn and Olive grew up together in the Canabolas Valley near Orange. They are in England at the outbreak of war: Evelyn as a pilot in the Air Transport Auxiliary, Olive in the Women’s Auxiliary Air Force. They’re joined by Evelyn’s brother Duncan, a novice gunner in Lancaster L-Love, flying bombing raids over Germany.
The raids take their toll on the crew, and the two women are drawn into a plot involving disguise and mistaken identity, to get the exhausted Duncan out of service.
The Orphan Gunner explores the seductions of passing, the licence granted by risk, and the selflessness – and selfishness – of sacrifice. The relationship between the two women is portrayed with subtlety and warmth, and an extraordinary sense of historical detail which brings its wartime setting vividly to life.