by Robert S Arbib Print book
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WSJ Review from April 3, 2010   (2010-04-04)
Following review is from WALL STREET JOURNAL April 3, 2010. Written by Lynne Olson and included in her "Five Best... Portraits of Wartime Britain".
In 1942, hordes of American GIs descended on East Anglia, a sleepy rural area in eastern England, to build a network of Eighth Air Force bases from which to bomb Germany. The resulting clash of cultures between the brash young Americans and the area's residents, most of whom had never met a foreigner before, is marvelously recounted in this delightful little memoir by Robert S. Arbib Jr., a former New York advertising executive who was one of the GIs. "I thought these people were supposed to speak English," complained one US soldier after his first exposure to the East Anglians' impenetrable rural dialect. "Someone should teach them how to speak their own language." Arbib, who grew to love the British, ends his book with one of the most moving and eloquent tributes to wartime Britain and its people that I have ever read.
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