“Aboot ten minutes later we heard the sound of an enemy plane, as though it was overheed, and then there was a loud crash.” When it comes to air-bombings over the UK during the Second World War, we invariably think of The Blitz in London, or maybe the assault on Coventry. But the north-east was also subject to bombing raids too, as a picture of South Shields market (included in this novel) makes clear. It shows wrecked buses and a lorry in the very centre of South Shields, which is strewn with masonry and rubble. The tale is told through the singular voice of Mossie, a grocery delivery boy, who volunteers to become a Police Auxiliary Messenger (ie a PAM of the book’s title: the PAMs needed to be ready to relay messages via bike if phone lines went down during a raid). This is an incredibly evocative story – told over an eighteen month period - in which the author weaves real-life figures with fictional characters to really bring to life those treacherous times of sandbags and blackouts.