book cover of The Roof of the World
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The Roof of the World

(The third book in the When Heroes Flew series)
A novel by

A legendary WWII airlift mission cuts through the snaggletoothed Himalaya Mountains, where both the terrain and weather prove uncommonly savage. And American airmen leave a trail of blood and mangled aircraft across northern Burma.

“I would rather fly a fighter against the Japs three times a day than a transport over the Hump once.”

Aviator Major Rod Shepherd, a C-46 pilot and Army Air Forces weather officer, flings his aircraft into the tumultuous skies to fly critical missions over the Hump. He braves not only the extreme—even impossible—flying conditions, but commanders who believe weather support is useless and a flight nurse who, for reasons unknown to Rod, dislikes him intensely.

Rod risks incredible danger with every flight. But when a mission of grave importance is imperiled at high altitude, Rod faces an unthinkable dilemma.

In The Roof of the World, former Air Force officer H.W. "Buzz" Bernard sweeps readers into some of the most dangerous flying of WWII. Join Major Rod Shepherd in the cockpit to experience history firsthand.



"Imagine flying a route so dangerous, so littered with aircraft wreckage, that crews called it the Aluminum Trail. Such was the heroism of the aviators who crossed the Hump—the Himalayas—during World War II. Yet their sacrifices remain one of the lesser known corners of World War II history. Buzz Bernard's gripping novel brings their story to light with stark detail and white-knuckle authenticity." —Tom Young, author of Silver Wings, Iron Cross and Red Burning Sky

"A turbulent and harrowing once a fast paced, genre bending historical war novel mixing elements of action/adventure with romance during WWII in the China/Burma India theater. Readers will appreciate Major Shepherd’s dark humor, especially as they learn why he’s both cynical and sensitive, a complex character we can root for. An enlightening and entertaining read. —Kathleen M. Rodgers, author of The Flying Cutterbucks, a 2021 WILLA Literary Award Finalist in Contemporary Fiction


What readers are saying:

★★★★★ "...incredible..."
★★★★★ "...Excellent read!"
★★★★★ "I just can't get enough of these stories..."
★★★★★ "...packed with excitement and suspense...and a surprise ending..."
★★★★★ "...flying scenes in this story were so real I swear I was sitting next to Rod on every transit..."

Genre: Historical

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