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Kak is desperate to get away from his abusive father. He lies about his age, and at 16, he enlists in the Canadian Air Force to fight in the Second World War. He dreams of flying with the Allied bombers. He is trained as a wireless operator and sent to a squadron in England. Kak is assigned to B for Buster, an old Halifax bomber. After his first mission, he realizes that the odds of survival are slim. He has nightmares; he is terrified and frightened of death. But he is afraid to confess and does not want to be branded as a coward. His only friends are Bert, the caretaker of the homing pigeons, and Percy, the pigeon that goes on each mission and becomes his good-luck charm.
Iain Lawrence has created a powerful and unforgettable story. B for Buster is captivating in its portrayal of the ordeals that bombers faced during the Second World War and the unimaginable sights that surrounded them. It exposes the nature of war and the emotions that it evokes: courage, horror, shame and fear. Readers will never view this war in the same way again. The book also includes maps, an author's note acknowledging sources of information and a glossary of terms.