Page 1 of 1

New Book "Zero Hour in Broome"

Posted: Sun Nov 07, 2010 7:15 pm
by Edward
Zero Hour in Broome
Dr Tom Lewis and Peter Ingman
(Avonmore Books 2010)
soft-cover 190 pages; 102 illustrations & photographs
44.95 $Au

"Zero Hour in Broome includes much original research of academic standard, while at the same time it will appeal to a wide audience and contains many colour illustrations. The lead author, Dr Tom Lewis, OAM, has first class credentials. He is a serving naval officer in Darwin and a nationally recognised expert on the war in northern Australia. For the first time, Zero Hour in Broome examines the actions of senior officials in connection to the second most deadly air attack on Australian soil. This occurred when Zero fighters destroyed 15 flying boats at Broome, some of them packed full of women and children evacuees from Java. Sadly, they made up most of the casualties. At the same time as this horror was unfolding, other flying boats were landing safely in Exmouth Gulf, many miles to the south. So why were all of the flying boats not diverted there? This is just one of the many fascinating questions raised by this publication. The book also profiles the many different aircraft types used during the Broome operations. Other unique reference material includes a list of all of the Broome pearling luggers and their fates as a result of the “scorched earth” policy imposed by the Japanese threat."

Interview with Authors
"A new look at the day World War II came to Broome, Broome war stories may have been embellished over time." ... =kimberley

Re: New Book "Zero Hour in Broome"

Posted: Thu Nov 11, 2010 5:04 am
by Andy in West Oz
It's a superb-looking book - colour maps, lovely aircraft profiles and a tonne of detail. Looking forward to reading it next.

Re: New Book "Zero Hour in Broome"

Posted: Sun Jul 10, 2011 7:05 am
by Andy in West Oz
Have finally posted the review on my site - ... er_10.html

Avonmore's Website & "Zero Hour in Broome"

Posted: Wed Aug 10, 2011 3:42 am
by Edward
The architects and writers of the website for Avonmore books have provided some excellent up-to-date material to supplement and expand upon Tom Lewis' and Peter Ingram's book Zero Hour In Broome. While the presence of this material is easy to miss while looking at the webpage for the book, hopefully readers will click on the button 'Discussion' at the upper right bar.

There are four sections relating to the book Zero Hour in Broome
1. Thanks to Gerard Cassius
2. Corrections & Discussion regarding Zero Hour in Broome
3. Information from Andrew Arnold
4. Weapons held at Broome Museum

The first section is an acknowledgment of the contributions by the Dutch aviation historian Gerard Cassius regarding the Dutch policy on evacuations. This material will be incorporated into the second edition of the book.

The second section provides corrections for some errata that readers have found in the text. The authors acknowledge any mistakes made or areas where there was a need to expand and elaborate about other interpretations of the evidence. They include a detailed story about the mystery surrounding the fate of Sgt Willard Beatty, USAAF that was written by Arvon Staats and Charles Jarrells. They provide information which resolves eyewitness reports of Zero fighters dropping "bombs" at Broome.

Section three is an article by Andrew Arnold on an air raid at Port Hedland in August 1942. The air defenses at Pt Hedland included some machine guns that had been salvaged from aircraft at Broome.

Section four is a report with color photos on machine guns which are held by the Broome museum. These weapons had been recovered from the wrecks of the seaplanes as well as bombers which had been strafed and burned on the runway.

I have not yet purchased a copy of Lewis' and Ingram's book but if this thoughtfully designed webpage is any indication of the care that they put into their research and writing it should be an excellent piece of history.

As I just said in another thread at this forum, "This is how it's done." This is how you use a webpage to provide information that supplements (and corrects) what has been published in your book. I applaud the two authors and those who have taken the time to write in and share their own research and information about the attack on Broome. Rather than ignoring information which may be in conflict with the text of their book the two authors are out in front, correcting any mistakes or oversights and providing space for other perspectives. This is great scholarship folks. This is how you get as close as possible to telling the most truthful and accurate story of what happened on that terrible day of March 3, 1942. This is what will serve future generations and provide a historical record that lasts.

When you finally see your book published after countless hours of research, interviewing, writing, rewriting, editing, layout and proofing you want people to congratulate you and tell you what a great thing you have done. That's important to the author - that's what friends, parents, spouses and close business associates are supposed to do. But the whole point of publishing is to get your information out there for people to read, digest, analyze and criticize (that's not a strictly negative action) your book. Then people can make comments, suggest other sources & material and debate interpretations. Listening to all of this is one of the most important ways for a author & scholar to learn and hone their craft. Tom Lewis and Peter Ingram clearly know this - they have put all of this information up there on their website. You almost never get everything right on the first go round. Records are too fragmentary for this period of recent history and expertise comes from all corners of the globe.

Authors and their editors have to seek a balance of research time and collaboration in order to tell their story without spending a lifetime on it. Almost no one has the fiscal resources (or patience) to allow for unlimited research. You do your best and get the story out there in a timely manner. The whole point of this should be sharing information. Congratulations to Tom and Peter and thanks for the use of the soapbox.