Biggles and the Deep Blue Sea by W. E. Johns was first published in 1968 by Brockhampton. This remained the only edition for the rest of the 20th century and it was not until 2007 that Norman Wright republished the title in a limited hardback edition. For some reason, unlike the Brockhampton Biggles books published before and after Deep Blue Sea, this title was never picked up by Knight Books and republished in the 1970s.
Biggles is sent by Air Commodore Raymond to check up on a remote British possession in the Indian Ocean--Jean Bonney Island. There had been a puzzling report of an aircraft heading for it. Who was flying it and what could the pilot want with the small volcanic rock with almost nothing on it? Of course, all the others want to go along but BIggles only wants to take one. They draw lots and this ends up as one of the few stories where Biggles goes on a mission with Algy.
Note: The sections below contain spoilers. In particular, the plot subpage (click here) has an extended summary of the narrative in the book
The Special Air Police/Scotland YardEdit
- Air Commodore Raymond
- Algy Lacey
- Ginger Hebblethwaite - only a brief appearance. Draws lots and fails to get the assignment.
- Bertie Lissie - same as Ginger above.
- Dum Dum Airport, Calcutta - transit and jump off point
- Jean Bonney Island - in the Bay of Bengal, along 15 degrees north, latitude
Other Research NotesEdit
References to the other storiesEdit
- Biggles at World's End (see below)
- Air Commodore Raymond mentions the Gadfly like something they had just procured and mentions the mission in Biggles at World's End (the Gadfly's first sortie) like it happened recently. Of course, the Gadfly had been used on many occasions and for a long time. World's End was published in 1959, almost nine years before Deep Blue Sea.
- During the war, Biggles and his squadron was operating on Elephant Island in the Mergui archipelago in Biggles Delivers the Goods. Their mission was flying loads of rubber from Elephant Island to India. Strange that they were not told about Jean Bonney island. It would have been right in the middle of their ferry route and would have been useful emergency landing strip.
- A lot of space is devoted to describing hashish, where it is used, how it looks like and how it is cultivated. But, of course, Biggles and Algy are no strangers to the drug. see The Sheikh and the Greek, Biggles in Africa to name just a few occasions.
- In Chapter 8, AAlgy says to Biggles: "A cigarette addict like you might do the same thing with tobacco."