Bomber is a novel written by Len Deighton and published in the UK in 1970. It is the fictionalised account of the events of 31 June [sic], 1943 in which an RAF bombing raid on the Ruhr area of western Germany goes wrong. In each chapter, the plot is advanced by seeing the progress of the day through the eyes of protagonists on both sides of the conflict.
Sam Lambert is an experienced RAF pilot based at an East Anglian bomber station. He has been flying missions over Germany since the start of the war and as he nears his tour's end, he is developing stressful exhaustion. The stress of flying missions is exacerbated by a plot device similar to that found in Here to Eternity. Lambert is an expert cricket bowler and the station commander needs his participation to assure victory against a rival. Lambert's refusal to do put him at odds with the station commander and an ambitious and unscrupulous flight lieutenant who seeks to force Lambert out of flying by taking his best crewmen and replacing them with poor performers (this hearkens to another war movie, Twelve O'clock High). At the same time, his crew revere him and believe that he is the one factor that will ensure their survival....