Official Review: Shot Down by Steve Snyder

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hsimone
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Official Review: Shot Down by Steve Snyder

Post by hsimone » 25 Oct 2015, 19:12

[Following is the official OnlineBookClub.org review of "Shot Down" by Steve Snyder.]
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4 out of 4 stars
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In our daily lives, sometimes we need a reminder of what true heroes are. This is what author Steve Snyder does in his book, SHOT DOWN: The true story of pilot Howard Snyder and the crew of the B-17 Susan Ruth. This nonfiction text describes the story of American pilot Lieutenant Howard Snyder, the author's father, and his crew during WWII.

Snyder used Howard's letters and journal entries, as well as diaries of other men and women to compile his book. He begins by reflecting on how difficult and depressing it was for Howard to leave his wife and child for the war. Howard names the plane he pilots 'Susan Ruth' after his first child. The author then proceeds to describe pilot training and the frightening, stress-inducing experiences the men faced in air-based combat. War itself is scary enough, but flyers needed to worry about frostbite, lack of oxygen and/or clogging up their oxygen tubes with frozen spit, causing instant death. Even with these risks, Howard and his crew, the 306th Bomb group, are able to safely land at their home base in Thurleigh, England. The men quickly learned how to adjust to their new lifestyle.

After several missions in Europe, the crew of the B-17 Susan Ruth meet their fate. They are brutally shot down by the Germans. As the plane is physically falling apart, the crew tries to keep their focus and start jumping ship. Some of those who survived are captured and treated inhumanly by the Germans. Others are hidden by seemingly ordinary Belgium civilians, who jeopardize their own lives to provide a sanctuary for the fallen American flyers. Howard isn't captured, but places himself back in danger by taking part in The French Maquis, a French resistance movement. Men wanting to go home to be with their loved ones, people desiring their freedom and safety, and brave people endangering their lives to help each other are all brought together in this amazingly intense novel.

I found this book extremely interesting, informational, and memorable. Snyder does a wonderful job of capturing the reader's attention throughout the book. I was able to learn more and more about WWII as I read, which is something I really enjoyed. It is easy to forget significant past events and the impact they had on people. Thanks to this book and the author, I was reminded, and all I feel is appreciation and respect for those who participated in the war.

Snyder provides the reader with a first-hand account of what those living during this harsh time had to endure by including several letters and journal entries in his book. I really liked this aspect, and it made the book unique. These letters and journal entries show the reader what a kind and loving man Howard Snyder was to his wife and child. I have no criticisms of this book. It is one that I was happy to choose, and one that I will always remember.

I rate SHOT DOWN: The true story of pilot Howard Snyder and the crew of the B-17 Susan Ruth 4 out of 4 stars. Snyder's detailed account of his father and crew's story allowed me to learn as I read. It also reminded me of how grateful I am for the men and women who participated in WWII. I would highly recommend this book for adults who enjoy nonfiction text about the struggles of war and the amazing people that experienced it.

******
Shot Down
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Post by gali » 26 Oct 2015, 01:19

Great review! I am glad you found the book interesting.
In the case of good books, the point is not to see how many of them you can get through, but rather how many can get through to you." (Mortimer J. Adler)

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Post by hsimone » 26 Oct 2015, 04:48

Thanks, gali! I've just recently have gotten into reading nonfiction text regarding war, specifically WWII. It was a perfect fit :)
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Post by bookowlie » 26 Oct 2015, 22:13

Great review! The book sounds fascinating.
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Post by hsimone » 27 Oct 2015, 05:03

Thanks, bookowlie! I thought it was! I forget sometimes how scary war is since it's not on my radar. But, like I said I'm glad I read Shot Down to remind me of these brave people.
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Post by Tanaya » 27 Oct 2015, 10:50

Wow. Sounds like an amazing book if it was able to have such an impact on you. Thanks for sharing.

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Post by hsimone » 27 Oct 2015, 11:29

It really is a wonderful book. Thank you for reading my review! :)
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Post by Ramona » 27 Oct 2015, 20:50

Great review, hsimone! This book sounds like a wonderful read! I enjoyed reading your review!
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Post by hsimone » 27 Oct 2015, 21:33

Thank you, Ramona, for your kind words and reading my review! It was a book that I will always remember.
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Post by PashaRu » 27 Oct 2015, 21:43

Thanks for a nice review. I enjoy reading non-fiction, and the subject of this book sounds quite interesting. The B-17 was a real workhorse in WWII; it's pretty amazing what those planes and crews did. This just might go on my TBR list.
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Post by hsimone » 28 Oct 2015, 04:58

Thank you, PashaRu! I agree, it is amazing what the crew endured. If you do end up reading it, I hope you enjoy it as much as I did.
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Post by jitendbhatre » 28 Oct 2015, 11:52

words are not enough to capture attention, feelings of the authors and close associations of facts and emotion makes it perfect, the review has outlined technical, and emotional challenges. You have won the war of thoughts and emotion. Best of luck.

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Post by LivreAmour217 » 28 Oct 2015, 13:09

Wonderful review! This book sounds really interesting. I love reading about World War II, and I think it's so important that we never forget the sacrifices that were made by these brave men!
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Post by hsimone » 28 Oct 2015, 15:54

jitendbhatre wrote:words are not enough to capture attention, feelings of the authors and close associations of facts and emotion makes it perfect, the review has outlined technical, and emotional challenges. You have won the war of thoughts and emotion. Best of luck.
I absolutely agree! Words are definitely not enough. As a reader, I can only imagine what these brave people went through. Living through it, though...wow! I can't imagine. I have enough fears flying on an airplane for fun traveling that there is no way I would be able to have enough strength to experience a fraction of what the people in war experiences. Thank you for your thoughts, jitendbhatre.

-- 28 Oct 2015, 15:59 --
LivreAmour217 wrote:Wonderful review! This book sounds really interesting. I love reading about World War II, and I think it's so important that we never forget the sacrifices that were made by these brave men!
Thank you, LivreAmour217! I absolutely agree about we should never forget the sacrifices these men made. When they made those sacrifices, they didn't even know who specifically they were saving. All they were thinking about was defending their homeland, and saving those poor people who were severely mistreated. That is why I am so glad I picked Shot Down to remind me of true heroism.
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Post by Rachaelamb1 » 02 Nov 2015, 05:55

I don't know if a war book could keep my attention for long, but your review certainly makes me want to read this one!

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