Mesopotamia – today’s Iraq – is aptly summed by by the author of this vivid memoir as ‘a land of sand, sun and sorrow’ – a description that would doubtless be recognised by British servicemen serving there today. The author was an RFC officer whose secondment to the MIddle East in 1916, he admits, came as a ‘relief’ after ‘the squalor’ of the Somme. His account of his and his comrades’ operations flying against Turkish and German aviators in Mespopotamia and Iran is dramatic and hugely informative. The narrative describes combined operations with the army, and naval units operating along the twin Tigris and Euphrates rivers. Among many other adventures, the author survived being shot down in his DH4 aircraft. His narrative, accompanied by a particularly fine range of some 40 photographs, including remarkable aerial shots, will fascinate anyone interested in aviation history, particularly in the lesser-known theatres of the Great War.