Frederick Forsyth wrote The Shepherd in one sitting on Christmas Eve in 1974 as a gift for his wife after telling her he had forgotten to get her anything for Christmas. Not knowing he was planning to surprise her with a diamond ring the next day, she asked him to write her a ghost story as her present. The result is a novella that is now a holiday classic. It is the story of a young Royal Air Force pilot flying his De Havilland Vampire home from Germany to England on Christmas Eve of 1957. After his instruments malfunction and fog makes visual navigation impossible, he spots a World War Two-era De Havilland Mosquito that shepherds him to RAF Minton, a non-operational storage depot. Who is the mysterious pilot who guided him to a safe landing? You will have to read the tale to find out.
My edition is beautifully illustrated by Lou Feck.
The story is, of course, dedicated to Frederick Forsyth’s wife, Carole.