Born in Horsham, Sussex, Innes worked as a journalist in the 1930s and became a full-time writer of adventure novels in 1946. Begin with Attack Alarm (1941), a compellingly vivid treatment of the London blitz, which draws on his wartime experiences as an anti-aircraft gunner. The novel's emphasis on action in extreme situations is typical of his subsequent fiction. The Blue Ice (1948) deals with a mineral expert who becomes a fugitive in the mountains of Norway as commercial and political interests attempt to discover the whereabouts of valuable ore deposits. His numerous books with maritime settings include The Wreck of the ‘Mary Deare’ (1956), in which the dogged Captain Patch struggles against wild seas for survival after his old freighter runs aground on a reef south of the Channel Islands.
Nevil Shute, Alistair MacLean DH