'The Chinese Attack: Ypres 1917'is the second edition of the 2011 paperback, currently available as a Matador ebook but due for re-issue shortly in paperback format. This will coincide with the centenary of the foundation of the Chinese Labour Corps in early 1917.
John Bishop stays with a war genre for his second novel, Love Freedom or Death but this time it is WW2 with Crete as the setting. This gives him plenty of scope to weave a fast moving plot around the Cretan freedom fighters, their allies, and the occupying German enemy.
Dudley Watkins, or Kiwi, as we get to know him has an unforgettable experience on Crete, which motivates him to volunteer to return to fight alongside the Cretan rebels hoping to throw the Germans off their beloved Greek island.
The author’s obvious knowledge and love of Crete comes through strongly as he unfolds the ever-changing plot whilst the fortunes of war frustrate all sides. The political allegiances of the locals also add to the plot dilemmas.
Added friction and complications arise because of Kiwi’s growing involvement with the Greek locals and in particular a female who captures his heart. These affiliations pose problems within the group and for Kiwi with his superior officers who fail to appreciate the issues Kiwi is facing in his struggle with not only his feelings but also the Germans.
The action swings between daring entanglements with the enemy and inter character rivalries and disputes. It all builds to a final climax, with Kiwi trying save the island.
However, can he outwit all of his scheming adversaries who look set to betray him. Only the final pages will reveal all in an unexpected ending.
by Rob Innis
John Bishop was born in Heswall on the Wirral and now lives in Codsall near Wolverhampton. Originally an English teacher, he was for six years a College Principal in Birmingham.
'The Chinese Attack', his first novel and originally published by Vanguard in 2011, was inspired by his grandfather's involvement as a sergeant with the Chinese Labour Corps on the Western Front in WW1.
His second novel, 'Love, Freedom or Death', derives from a long-running love affair with Greece. His third novel, 'Refuse to Forget', emerged from a fascination with the way WW1 started aand drew people into a cataclysm they could never have imagined.