a bit about the book

Night of Flames paints a vivid and terrifying picture of war-torn Europe during WWII. It’s the tale of a Krakow university professor Anna and her husband Jan, a Polish cavalryman. Separated and forced to flee occupied Poland, Anna soon finds herself caught up in the Belgian Resistance, while Jan becomes embedded in British Intelligence efforts to contact the Resistance in Poland. He seizes this opportunity to search for his lost wife Anna. Through the long night of Nazi occupation, Anna, Jan and the ordinary people of two countries fight a covert war of sabotage and resistance against the overwhelming might of the German war machine.

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The book is available to the trade by Independent Publisher's Group.

Night of Flames now available at all bookstores

Friday, December 7, 2007

Meeting a "Comet Line" Agent

She is petite with grayish-blond hair, a ready smile and a sparkle in her eye. She is soft-spoken in her Flemish accented English but remembers every detail of those days over sixty years ago when she was an agent for the "Comet Line." Andree Dumon (code name, "Nadine")was recruited at age seventeen by a local school teacher into Belgium's covert escape line for Allied aviators. We met for a luncheon along with another of her fellow agents from the war years, Denise Claycomb, and Comete Kinship Belgium at Maison des Ailes (the House of Wings)in Brussels. Operating out of her parents' home in Brussels from 1941-43, Nadine escorted more than twenty Allied airman shot down over Belgium to a safehouse in Paris. Traveling by trains at night she would lead the aviators, all of them older and a lot taller than she was, through checkpoints, advising them to keep quiet whenever German soldiers demanded to see their falsified identification cards. In Paris she would hand them over to another agent, known to her only by a number or codename. This agent would in turn lead them on another route and the clandestine action was repeated over and over until the aviator was safely across the Pyrenees mountains into Spain and on his way to safety in England. Eventually, like most agents of the Comet Line, Nadine's luck ran out and she was arrested by the Gestapo along with her mother and father. During more than two years in three different German concentration camps, suffering from typhus, Nadine managed to survive until liberation by Allied armies in 1945. As she was telling me her story, her smile broadened as she remarked how, in the years after the war, she has been reunited with all of the young American, British, Canadian and Australian aviators she managed to help escape certain death by the Nazi occupiers.

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