CONVOY! by Paul Kemp


War Hero
Book Reviewer
(1993, Cassell Military Ppbk 2000)

A very full, and interestingly illustrated, account of the Arctic convoys to Russia - why, when, how, what, where and who. I have got as far as the PQ17 disaster and a detailed account of who said what and to whom and why Pound, in spite of the evidence, acted as he did. I'm very impressed by the research that has gone into this, which includes the story of every convoy we ran, and also the part played by ultra in guiding our actions, and how pressure from Roosevelt, Stalin and Churchill overrode purely military considerations (and why) and at what (appalling) cost.


War Hero
I read that a couple of years ago. Very interesting book, particularly on the subject of PQ17.

Tui Bird

I have an idea his father served on a merchant ship in the WW2 convoys --- but it's a while since read it .Tui


Thanks for posting this review. Must add this title to my list of 'must reads'.
Have started to get interested in the Arctic Convoys after seeing a related exhibition on the subject at the National Maritime Museum, and from reading Alan Ross' poetry , I've also watched a documentary about PQ17 presented by Jeremy Clarkson. Reading this book could be helpful.


I recall reading the book written by the Captain (D) of the escort group for PQ17. It was years ago (actually decades) but I can still recall his description of how he felt when he received the order to abandon the convoy (for it was to scatter) and for him to join the shadowing cruiser squadron. He describes very mixed emotions as he sailed back down the convoy but tinged with the feeling that very shortly he would be facing a very tough enemy indeed and then hour after hour of not meeting anything but with the growing feeling that a very big mistake had been made. I cannot recall the name of the book now which is a pity as I would like to reread it.

Actually, just found it, isn't the internet a wonderful thing for looking up stuff.

"Convoy Is To Scatter" by Capt. Jack Broome


Tui Bird

I vaguely recall Naval Historian and author Paul Kemp's father was a merchant seaman on the convoys . Paul Kemp's book on the RN 'T" class submarine of WW2 is considered a classic . I am in his Facebook group and he is a most amiable fellow .
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