Know Your Enemy
by Hugh Aldersey

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Know Your Enemy – by Hugh Aldersey
Product details
Paperback: 356 pages
Publisher: Hugh Aldersey
ISBN: 9780994187130
Trim size: 128 x 203 mm
Know Your Enemy is the sequel to Irregular Safari and follows the same family through two world wars and the Great Depression.

Renewed terrorist activity, reprisal attacks and political pressure force the sale of the family interests in South Africa and after much difficulty, a gun battle and tragedy they are able to consolidate back in Britain.

On the outbreak of WW I the family become involved and some are posted to the Western Front in France. The horrors of trench warfare and a field hospital are experienced. (Based on a diary written in the trenches by the author’s father.)

The countries of Europe were bankrupted by the war and were ill prepared for the start of the depression and the Wall Street crash and were struggling for survival. Hitler emerged and manipulated the situation to form the Third Reich with plans to overrun Europe.

Members of the family and their friends are directly involved in many of the lesser known secret facets of WW II such as Mulberry, Knickebein, Armadillo, Pluto, Un Grand Ruse de Guerre and the Quattara Rabbit Run Deception.   

An assignment to gather secret information keeps the family au fait with a lot of classified material but causes reprisal attacks from the ‘Enemy Within’ and amazing revelations of traitors operating on the ‘Home Front’.

The highly secret preparations for ‘D Day’ and the Normandy landing reach a crisis that requires much skill, improvisation and bravery to resolve. 

About the Author Hugh Aldersey was educated at Radley College and Birkenhead College and worked in heavy engineering before going into the British Army. He was commissioned in REME and served in Egypt with African Colonial troops, British troops and native tradesmen. On leaving the Army he migrated to Australia and was editor of the ‘Australian Mechanical Engineering’ magazine. He has also held a number of positions in technical marketing and has travelled extensively.
Name : Lillian Brown
Location : Melbourne
Title : RIch in Historical detail
Review : Rich in historical detail, both these meticulously researched novels, Irregular Safari and Know Your Enemy, evoke a strong sense of a traumatic past. Set across South Africa and England, the story begins in the 1890s as the hero of both books, Mark Oakhill, begins what will develop into an adventurous, threat filled life. His struggles through the years, first with the Boers and then with a series of terrorists from a variety of backgrounds will see him brought very low. He perseveres, however, and his efforts to withstand the trials that will befall him forms the core of both books. His exploits also serve to fill in some understanding of the many complexities of the conflicts feeding in to the Boer Wars and, more ambitiously, World War I and II. The world inhabited by the Boers is perhaps best evoked, as is the country of South Africa. We read about her gold, her diamonds and most tellingly, a host of foreign interests. Wild life is there too. There is even ad hand-reared lioness who remains tame (but only to those who knew her as a cub!). The books evoke an authentic period atmosphere, revealing the language, habits and customs of times long past. Characters are faithfully portrayed with the particular context of their times. History buffs will enjoy reading details of some of the lesser known causes of the Boer and World Wars. The author has even provided maps, sketches and contemporary photographs to offer greater informative detail. Hugh Aldersey’s engineering background is evident too in the many descriptions of equipment construction which are described in telling detail in the second novel, Know Your Enemy. Life in the trenches and in field hospitals is vividly portrayed. Again, contemporary photography offers more detail here. Throughout both these novels, there is plenty of evil doing. Oakhill and his extended clan suffer mightily at the hands of various terrorists and perpetrators of atrocities. It must be said, however, that they never lose their British cool. These novels tell of daring, strength in the face of adversity and, in spite of the traumatic and troubled times these novels describe, the ultimate message is one of cautious optimism.

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