WORRALS FLIES AGAIN
First Published in September 1942 - 220 pages
Although this was in fact the second Worrals book published (in date order) it contains the third Worrals story. This is because the story in the third book published in October 1942, Worrals Carries On first appeared as a serialisation in the Girl's Own Paper between October 1941 and September 1942. The second Worrals book published in September 1942, Worrals Flies Again, contained a story that had been serialised in Girl's Own Paper between October 1942 and December 1943 and from the content, it is clear that it was written after Worrals Carries On.
Click on the dust jacket below to enlarge
The original first edition dust jacket – showing the original book price of 5 shillings.
WORRALS FLIES AGAIN - STORY SUMMARY
Worrals is summoned to meet Squadron Leader Marcus Yorke. He wants Worrals to hide an aircraft at the Chateau Delarose in France, so that it can be used to fly urgent messages from French spies back to England. A pilot will also be required to stay with the machine. Worrals and Frecks fly to the Chateau in France only to find out that it has now be taken over by German troops. Meeting with the custodians, Monsieur and Madame Mundier, together with their insane son Lucien, Worrals is still able to hide her small aircraft in the vast cellars of the Chateau without being discovered. Worrals and Frecks then pose as visiting nieces. Meeting with the German Officers, who boast they have captured a spy, Worrals is shown the suspicious item the spy was carrying. It is Page 137 out of a book, L'Histoire de la Revolution. The German in charge is Oberleutnant Schaffer and he is astonished to be told that his captured spy has escaped from a locked room. Worrals resolves to steal the message from Schaffer's tunic when he is sleeping and replace it with another page from the same book. She finds a copy of the same book in the Chateau as it is a very popular book in France, but Page 137 is missing. Worrals takes Page 139 but is thwarted in her attempt to steal the original from Schaffer when a shadowy figure beats her to it. She leaves Page 139 nearby in the hope that Schaffer will think he had dropped it and got the page number wrong. The following day the Chateau is visited by a sinister nun who decides to leaf through the book, L'Histoire de la Revolution. To everyone's surprise all the pages are complete! After the nun leaves, Worrals tells everybody that she had realised from a prior description and photograph, that the nun was in fact a man, Wilhelm von Brandisch of the Gestapo. Worrals is left a message, this time contained in Page 421 of the same book as before and she decides to fly what must be an important message home, while the weather is bad enough to cover her departure. After she has left, Frecks is shocked to discover the Germans wiring the field they have used. When Worrals' plane returns it crashes and bursts into flame! Frecks rushes to her room, only to be later confronted by von Brandisch of the Gestapo! Meanwhile, we learn that Worrals was not in the plane having had cause to stop on her return journey to deliver homing pigeons to another French agent. The Germans had captured her plane and one of them had flown it back to the Chateau. Worrals returns to the Chateau just in time to see von Brandisch confronting Frecks. Expecting to be confronted as spies, the girls are surprised when von Brandisch asks them to spy for him. The next day Worrals decides to release a homing pigeon from the roof of the Chateau to take word of the loss of their plane back to England. On the roof the other German Officer, Lowenhardt catches them. Lucien and a mysterious man kill him. This person, called Raoul, is the spy who escaped and the same man who took the message from Schaffer. Lucien is not mad at all, it is merely his cover for his work with the French Resistance. Worrals wonders what Lowenhardt was doing on the roof and realises that he was installing a microphone to 'bug' their room. Worrals goes to von Brandisch's office to report a find of a German Officer's uniform by the side of the river - in an attempt to cover the disappearance of Lowenhardt. At the Gestapo office she bumps into her old friend Bill Ashton who has been captured. The Gestapo have also arrested Monsieur Mundier. He and his wife are really the Count and Countess de la Rose and the Chateau is their home and Lucien their son. With a clever plan, Worrals helps both Bill and the Count escape back to the Chateau. Von Brandisch takes Worrals back to the Chateau but she is able to disappear into one of the many secret hidden passages that the Chateau has. Our heroes are smuggled out of the Chateau and out of France, back to England.
The original artwork for this book is currently in my private collection – both the cover and the colour frontispiece.
This was the first artwork Leslie Stead ever did for a W. E. Johns book.
Click on the picture below to see it in more detail
Worrals Flies Again
Subtitle - none
Publication Details - published by Hodder and Stoughton
Above – the cover etching on the September 1942 first edition
Below the lovely gold etching on the black cover of the November 1949 fourth impression reprint