Inside the Book: The Bushell Connection
This is the first of a number of upcoming blog posts where we go Inside the Book with author John Carr. Here we look at John’s connection to Roger Bushell, the fighter pilot who inspired him to become a soldier himself:
Q: How did you come up with the idea for the book, and when did you realize it would become a book?
A: I actually looked for a copy of his biography in 2002, thinking that some Englishman had written it after the war. I was shocked when I found it did not exist.
Around that time, I’d believed maybe he was good enough for a long article in a history magazine. It was, however, when I went to South Africa and discovered that his mother, father and sister Lis Carter had saved all of his POW letters from WW2 that I thought, ‘Maybe there’s a book here.’ Dorothea Bushell wrote some amazing poems about his life, and there were letters from his POW comrades about him in some scrapbooks. None of it had been read by his family, much less published. There was even a picture of a ship named the ‘Roger Bushell.’ He was some dude.
Q: Roger Bushell means a lot to you personally. What would your readers like to take away from the life and times of Roger Bushell?
A: He was charismatic, talented and had flaws like the rest of us. Also, Bushell grew up in 1930s England and Europe when it was a wonderland. That world is gone. I tried to bring some of that to life in the book.