The Times comment on the front cover of this paperback edition describes it as ‘Arguably the best POW book ever written’. I would say, why the ‘arguably’? This is a quite exceptional work, one of those few that can be read and re-read with interest and enjoyment. The author – resolutely critical and self-critical – has a brilliant eye for observation; he doesn’t merely describe life in RAF officer camps in Germany, he guides you through the overcrowded huts and around the exercise field; you feel the chronic hunger of the prisoners; experience the mixed emotions of an escape attempt; endure the petty irritations and jealousies of prison life and suffer the dread tedium of yet another day of incarceration with no release date in sight. Kee can also be very funny, and some incidents – such as the ‘laying down of the brew’ – are transformed into minor comic masterpieces. If you only read one POW memoir, read this one.