This is the story about Franz Hess, a Jewish scientist working at an armaments Research and Development complex in the Ruhr, Germany during World War 11.
Franz, an enthusiast of American Swing Bands and himself an accomplished saxophonist, decides to form his own band, which inadvertently saves his life.
The Gestapo ‘rounded up’ all scientists to work for the German ‘war machine’ and as Franz was Jewish he was forced to work on fuel systems for the development of V1 and V11 rockets to enable far reaching bombing raids on England.
Retaliating, the Allies heavily bombed the Ruhr in 1942 and in the chaos Franz escaped his enforced imprisonment to Switzerland with the help of the French Resistance and Allies, finding himself eventually in America and England.
It was known 5th columnists were actively sending information to Germany from somewhere within an American Base in Southern England. The Allies recruited Franz, because of his training and scientific knowledge to route out the spies. He was subsequently given a new identity, authorizing him to investigate under cover of
G I Bandsman, Captain Billy Bolton. A good way to investigate was to form a Base swing band to get to know the GI’s, and gain their confidence. The band played at weekly socials, which Franz hoped would trap the spies/5th columnists into making mistakes resulting in their discovery. Unbeknown to Franz, he had recruited musicians who were 5th columnists.
Subsequently, a femme fatale romantically obsessed him sufficiently for him to commit a treasonable act, resulting in his arrest, culminating in a ‘hair raising’ escape with terrifying consequences.