Title The War of the Raven
Author Chris Heal
Paperback 234 x 155 mm, RRP £13.50
Content 322 pages • 5 maps •  41 B&W illustration
ISBN 978-1-9161944-7-2
Printer IngramSpark
Publisher Chattaway & Spottiswood, Hampshire
October 2023

The War of the Raven

Bored by his initial WW1 service in the Baltic, Georg Gerth volunteered for the excitement of a u-boat command to counter England’s attempt to blockade and starve Germany into submission.

His patrols in 1917 took him to the North Sea, the English Channel and the French Atlantic coast. His faulty equipment led to terrifying experiences. He engaged his enemy with torpedoes, canon, machine guns, bombs and even stopped a coal-carrying sailing ship with a revolver fired from his conning tower.

Gerth became infamous when his u-boat stranded south of Calais. It was falsely claimed it had been captured by the Belgian cavalry and this became an international joke. The intelligence gain from the wreck and crew was described officially as minimal, particularly as Gerth blew up and set fire to his boat. This claim was subterfuge; the intelligence gained was substantial and, to this day, kept very quiet.

Confined on a French Atlantic island, Gerth attempted a daring escape arranged through secret ink letters to his fleet commander. He was kept in prison till long after the war ended as part of the retribution around reparations and the Versailles Treaty.

The War of The Raven is the true story of Georg Gerth’s career, backed by extensive research across European archives and supported by private interviews with his descendants, finally rediscovered in Bavaria. The book is a companion volume to the career of Erich Gerth, Georg’s older brother, also a u-boat captain, titled Saints & Sinners.

The story of Georg Gerth and his u-boat is also recounted in French in La dernière patrouille de l’UC 61. Erich and Georg Gerths’ careers are told together against the broad context of WW1 and the Weimar Republic in Sound of Hunger.

The War of The Raven is available for purchase from selected local stores, major bookshops and from internet retailers at a recommended retail price of £13.50.