A novel by Steven Barton
The Quiet Birdmen, Blood, Sweat & Tears
A work of Historical Fiction.
They were four wide-eyed teenagers when they left home in 1942-1943 to learn to fly. By the end of World War II, they were all battle-worn fighter pilot’s who had survived more than a hundred combat missions. With all the remarkable skills that have established these pilots as some of the most-respected aviation combat pilots in history, the wonder of flying-that exquisite harmony between pilot and machine aloft in the insubstantial air. The stunning beauty and awesome reality of an aerial combat engagement in the frozen skies over Europe during World War II. The madness of war and the horror of death, the friendships forged in cockpits during life or death missions and while letting off steam in smoke filled O Clubs, those extraordinary years are recalled: with stunning eloquence and clarity, their heart-stopping aerial duels are vividly re-lived. More than a combat tale, this is the true story of the QB Document, a pre-WWII secret agreement between QB member Ernst Udet, WWI German ace and QB member Captain Eddie Rickenbacker WWI American ace. During WWII, when one of these twenty-four QB Document signing Luftwaffe fighter pilots was killed in aerial combat, the story tells of the top-secret adoptions of their children by the American fighter pilots who shot them down. Each of the four Luftwaffe and four American pilots’ last combat missions are retold in breathtaking detail. The Story continues, with how all four U.S. pilots were offered jobs personally by Captain Eddie Rickenbacker to fly commercially for Eastern Airlines after the war. An unbelievable secret operation played out after seventy plus years of silence. A remarkable rite of passage in that timeless world of innocence gone to war. The stories of the “Four QB Children,” are revealed, one goes on to become a NASA Shuttle Astronaut, two will fly combat in Viet Nam, and one is recruited into a secret unit in the CIA. The book finally concludes with the assassination of a high powered former Nazi official living in Argentina in 1982.
Steven Barton is the author of the Quiet Birdmen, his first novel. He holds a degree in Criminology from Florida State University. He has twenty plus years of working in law enforcement and conducting investigations. He is currently a member of a Counter-Terrorism Unit for the U.S. Department of Homeland Security. He is a member of the American Federation of Government Employees, AFL-CIO, the Police Benevolent Association, the Fraternal Order of Police, the Society of Competitive Intelligence Professionals, the American Society of Industrial Security, the Boy Scouts of America, the Order of the Arrow, and Sigma Phi Epsilon Fraternity. He lives in Florida with his wife, Darlene. You may visit him at his website www.quietbirdmennovel.com.