'Some bright kid's got a gun and 2000 rounds of live ammo. And that gun's no peashooter. It'll go through a brick wall at a quarter of a mile.' Chas McGill has the second-best collection of war souvenirs in Garmouth, and he desperately wants it to be the best. When he stumbles across the remains of a German bomber crashed in the woods - its shiny, black machine-gun still intact - he grabs his chance. Soon he's masterminding his own war effort with dangerous and unexpected results.... '.... not just the best book so far written for children about the Second World War, but also a metaphor for now.' Aidan Chambers, Times Literary Supplement
Robert Westall was born in 1929 on Tyneside, where he grew up during the Second World War. He studied Fine Art and Sculpture, and for many years taught in schools throughout the North of England. His first novel for children, The Machine Gunners won the Carnegie Medal in 1975. He won it again in 1982 for The Scarecrow (the first writer to win the medal twice), the Smarties Prize in 1989 for Blitzcat, and the Guardian Award in 1991 for The Kingdom By The Sea. He died in 1993.