Author(s): Ree, Jonathan,
Date of Publication: 03/03/2020,
Pagination: 192 pages, 24 b-w illus.,
Imprint: Yale University Press
Published By: Yale University Press
Book Classification: Biography: historical political & military, Second World War, Espionage & secret services
The wartime adventures of the legendary SOE agent Harry Ree, told in his own words.
A school teacher at the start of the war, Harry Ree renounced his former pacifism with the fall of France in 1940. He was deployed into a secret branch of the British army and parachuted into central France in April 1943.
Harry showed a particular talent for winning the confidence of local resisters, and guided them in a series of dramatic sabotage operations, before getting into a hand-to-hand fight with an armed German officer, from which he was lucky to escape.
This might seem like a romantic story of heroism and derring-do, but Harry Ree's own war writings, superbly edited and contextualized by his son, the philosopher Jonathan Ree, are far more nuanced, shot through with doubts, regrets, and grief.