The saga of the R A F during the Battle of Britain and the blitz of August -- September, seen through the story of one man, his fellow pilots, commanders, and the background of the airdrome. Young Oliver goes through his training, then on to Goudhurst, and into immediate serial combat; one sees the high mortality rate growing among his fellows in the small force of men and planes, the growing ferocity of attack, and the suicidal, superhuman efforts to ward off total destruction. One follows Oliver's flight in a reconditioned Messerachamidt on a successful ""target for tonight"" expedition. Then hospitalisation -- a return to the job before he is fit -- a gradual turning into a sort of machine for extermination of German planes and fliers -- an assignment to break the news of the suicide of his Wing Commander to the wife. And finally death. Implicit in the record is drama, human value, good reading -- condensation of a broader picture.