She Landed by Moonlight

She Landed by Moonlight On the night of the September Pearl Witherington a twenty nine year old British secretary and agent of the Special Operations Executive SOE was parachuted from a Halifax bomber into Occupie

  • Title: She Landed by Moonlight
  • Author: Carole Seymour-Jones
  • ISBN: 9781444724615
  • Page: 420
  • Format: Paperback
  • On the night of the 22 September 1943 Pearl Witherington, a twenty nine year old British secretary and agent of the Special Operations Executive SOE , was parachuted from a Halifax bomber into Occupied France Like Sebastian Faulks heroine, Charlotte Gray, Pearl had a dual mission to fight for her beloved, broken France and to find her lost love Pearl s lover was a ParOn the night of the 22 September 1943 Pearl Witherington, a twenty nine year old British secretary and agent of the Special Operations Executive SOE , was parachuted from a Halifax bomber into Occupied France Like Sebastian Faulks heroine, Charlotte Gray, Pearl had a dual mission to fight for her beloved, broken France and to find her lost love Pearl s lover was a Parisian parfumier turned soldier, Henri Cornioley, who had been taken prisoner while serving in the French Logistics Corps and subsequently escaped from his German POW camp Agent Pearl Witherington s wartime record is unique and heroic As the only woman agent in the history of SOEs in France to have run a network, she became a fearless and legendary guerrilla leader organising, arming and training 3,800 Resistance fighters Probably the greatest female organiser of armed maquisards in France, the woman whom her young troops called Ma M re , Pearl lit the fires of Resistance in Central France so that Churchill s famous order to set Europe ablaze , which had brought SOE into being, finally came to pass Pearl s story takes us from her harsh, impoverished childhood in Paris, to the lonely forests and farmhouses of the Loir et Cher where she would become a true warrior queen Shortly before Pearl s death in 2008, the Queen presented her with a CBE in Paris While male agents and Special Force Jedburghs received the DSO or Military Cross, an ungrateful country had forgotten Pearl She had been offered a civilian decoration in 1945 which she refused, saying There was nothing civil about what I did But what pleased her most was to receive her Parachute Wings, for which she had waited over 60 years Two RAF officers travelled to her old people s home and she was finally able to pin the coveted wings on her lapel Pearl died in February 2008 aged 93.

    • She Landed by Moonlight ¦ Carole Seymour-Jones
      420 Carole Seymour-Jones
    • thumbnail Title: She Landed by Moonlight ¦ Carole Seymour-Jones
      Posted by:Carole Seymour-Jones
      Published :2019-04-07T01:10:03+00:00

    2 thoughts on “She Landed by Moonlight

    1. Carole Seymour Jones was born in North Wales.Educated at Lady Margaret Hall, Oxford, and Sussex University, she became the acclaimed biographer of Beatrice Webb, Simone de Beauvoir and Vivienne Eliot, while her most recent book examined the life of Anglo French SOE agent Pearl Witherington She cited fellow biographers Richard Holmes and Hermione Lee, plus historian Antony Beevor, among her influences A teacher of creative non fiction, memoir and biography, Carole was a Visiting Fellow at the University of Surrey, a regular broadcaster, and judge of the Biographers Club Tony Lothian Prize Her biography Painted Shadow The Life of Vivienne Eliot was shortlisted for the Samuel Johnson Prize She was the chair of the Writers in Prison Committee of English PEN, and co editor of Another Sky Voices of Conscience from Around the World , a collection of pieces by writers imprisoned for expressing their views.

    2. This is my third biography of a female SOE agent operating in Nazi occupied France. Unlike Noor Inayat Khan and Violette Szabo, Pearl Witherington survived the war. She also led an army of 3,000 maquis against the German army, a unique achievement for a woman in WW2. Of the three biographies, this probably gives the best overview of SOE operations in France. It’s marginally better researched than the others. Pearl was also fighting face to face with the brutal Das Reich division of the Waffen [...]

    3. Heroic stuff. A gripping history of the SOE during the Nazi occupation of France and their crucial role in Operation Overlord.

    4. I didn't love the tone of this one - somewhat on the sensational side, particularly after having read Pearl Witherington's own words on the subject - but it was better than some of the others I've read recently. It did give some information about the particulars of the political infighting between the various British agencies that I haven't read before. Also details about De Gaulle and the RF section and how they fit in. And the specifics of the way in which the German advance northward after D [...]

    5. A great story and an average story teller. And remarkably, the story is about actual events. These were incredible times and the SOE, incredible people. Any European reading today after decades of peacetime must feel a sense of humility.The book follows a loose, chronological sequence following Pearl through her work before the war at the British Foreign Office, her narrow escape from France with her family to her training and work as a spy. However, Carole covers much more than Pearl's story, f [...]

    6. I wanted to like this book because the story is so fascinating. But the writing was too muddled to make it an enjoyable read. Names of people and agencies come fast and furious, and without much in the way of introduction. Some people reappear later in the story and you need to remember who they are while others are mentioned once and never heard from again. I realize that history is messy and this is not a novel, but it would help to introduce the more important characters with some context so [...]

    7. This is a well researched account of the life of a remarkable woman, Pearl Witherington, who on 22nd September 1943 was parachuted into occupied France as one of the few female agents of the Special Operations Executive (SOE). It is written in a fluent, readable style and the late Carole Seymour Jones provides the reader with sufficient background details about the internal machinations in Whitehall, the politics of the day and the events leading up to D Day to enable you to understand the diffi [...]

    8. I was so interested in this story I got my Library system to buy it. It's a researchers offering. I got so tired of ALL the many people involved , who were introduced to the detriment of the heroine's story Gave up, I couldn't keep track of all the people she encountered. The time also jumps forward, backward, further back, well forward,and just when it seems she is REALLY about to discuss her job as a SOE operative, back we go

    9. The book is so very unevenly written. Sometimes the book was so tedious with details of person and places interrupted with a harrowing story of the bravery of the men and women sent by Britain into France to assist the French in the resistance against the Germans during WWII. The story is so incredible and i did wish that it was told by a more engaging writer.

    10. Well researched and written - with interesting background about the internal fighting and politicking between various ministries in WWII and the enormous sacrifices made by everyone involved, and the unparallelled bravery of a few. An interesting take on sexism and gender, and a much better effort than Peter Fitzsimons biography of Nancy Wake.

    11. Mi sono davvero ricreduto su questo libro. E' un buon libro che racconta delle vicende sulla Seconda Guerra Mondiale poco note

    12. I persevered with this book and finally got it read but the style of writing was dry and I was very disappointed with it. Names fell onto the page like the proverbial confetti, to such an extent that I eventually gave up trying to keep track of who was who. Also, I don't read French and so I found the French text a distraction to the story. Finally, I expected the book to be about Peal Witherington but I was extremely disappointed to find that, for the majority of the book, she wasn't mentioned [...]

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