Reviews of books or magazines relating to scale modeling.

Germany’s East Wall in World War II

Published: June 16th, 2015     
Germany’s East Wall in World War II
Author: Neil Short
Reviewed by: Tom Moon, IPMS# 43192
Company: Osprey Publishing

The book is divided into 8 chapters with an introduction, index, a Bibliography and Glossary & Abbreviations:

  • Chronology
  • Design and Development
  • The Principles of Defense
  • Tour of the Sites
  • The Living Site
  • Operational History
  • Aftermath
  • The Sites Today

This illustrated volume analyses the different defensive elements of the East Wall, the phases of their construction, the shifting strategic focus, and what life was like for those manning the defenses in the final days of the war.


The book is a quick read and is well researched and documented. From the modelers perspective this will not give you many ideas for dioramas, but as a quick review of the East Wall German fortifications it does the job.

Thanks to Osprey Publishing for the review copy and to IPMS/USA for the review space.

Armies of the Greek-Turkish War 1919-22

Published: June 10th, 2015     
Armies of the Greek-Turkish War 1919-22
Author: Philip S. Jowett; Illustrated by: Stephen Walsh
Reviewed by: Steve Zajac, IPMS# 34937
Company: Osprey Publishing

Osprey Publishing’s latest Men-at-Arms monograph focuses on the fighting men, weapons and equipment used during the war between the Greeks and Turks, in the aftermath of World War I. This from the website: "This is a comprehensive guide to the armies that fought a devastating and decisive conflict in the Eastern Mediterranean between the two World Wars of the 20th century. From the initial Greek invasion, designed to "liberate" the 100,000 ethnic Greeks that lived in Western Turkey and had done for centuries, to Mustafa Kemal Atatürk's incredibly efficient formation of a national government and a regular army, this was a war that shaped the geopolitical landscape of the Mediterranean to this day. It gave birth to the modern Turkish state, displacing millions and creating bitter memories of atrocities committed by both sides. Augmented with very rare photographs and beautiful illustrations, this ground-breaking title explores the history, organization, and appearance of the armies, both guerilla and conventional, that fought in this bloody war".

Nimrod's Genesis: RAF Maritime Patrol Projects and Weapons Since 1945

Published: June 10th, 2015     
Nimrod's Genesis: RAF Maritime Patrol Projects and Weapons Since 1945
Author: Chris Gibson
Reviewed by: Frank Landrus, IPMS# 35035
Company: Hikoki Publications

Chris Gibson’s latest book on British aviation projects examines the post-war genesis of the RAF's maritime patrol aircraft. Starting with the British affection for its flying boats of 1945, Chris Gibson chronicles the switchback path that led to the Shackleton and ultimately the Nimrod. As a bonus for underwater target fans, Chris Gibson provides intrepid commentary on the aerial systems developed to counter the threat from Soviet submarines.

To seek and destroy Soviet submarines, Shackletons and Nimrods carried many advanced weapons and sensors, but also played a role in saving lives at sea. Then, after forty years' service, the Nimrods were withdrawn without replacement after one of the most expensive procurement disasters.

Following in the path of Chris Gibson’s previous books, this tome presents hundreds of illustrations, photographs, and artwork. Chris must have really enjoyed the research as there are many projects depicted I was previously unaware of.

Forgotten Aerodromes Of World War I

Published: June 9th, 2015     
Forgotten Aerodromes Of World War I
Author: Martyn Chorlton
Reviewed by: Roger A Rasor, IPMS# 34117
Company: Crecy Publishing, Ltd.

The growing interest in World War I aircraft among model builders and aviation history buffs has fostered an increase in the variety of publications offering information about the subject. Among them is a well-researched hard cover book recently published by Crecy Publishing (and distributed in the US by Specialty Press) about the military airfields that populated the British landscape during and after WWI. The Brits referred to these facilities as Aerodromes, and they were numerous. In FORGOTTEN AERODROMES OF WORLD WAR I, author Martyn Chorlton documents a total of 502 RFC and RNAS sites by country and county. Many began as nothing more than a grassy field with a simple structure or two. Most have been lost to other uses in the nearly 100 years since they were constructed, but some still serve. Remnants of others can be found, but many of their names are etched in history.

Nieuport 24/27 At War

Published: June 5th, 2015     
Nieuport 24/27 At War
Author: Paolo Varriale; Illustrators: Roberto Zanella, Ronny Bar, Martin Digmayer
Reviewed by: Roger Rasor, IPMS# 34117
Company: Albatros Productions, Ltd.

By 1916, the little Nieuport 11, also known to the French Militaire by its initials BB (which the French pronounced bébé), had succeeded in putting an end to the Fokker Scourge and therefore gaining the respect of ally and foe alike.  A higher horsepower version, known as the Nieuport 17 followed and built on that legacy, becoming the preferred mount for many of the Allies’ first generation Aces.  But subsequent efforts to continually improve upon Nieuport’s basic Vee-strutter design fell short of expectations with the introduction of the 24, 24bis and later the 27.  Failing to match the performance of a new generation of fighters, these Nieuport designs generated little enthusiasm among French pilots who instead looked forward to flying the much-desired new SPAD.  Unfortunately, SPAD production could not match demand and there was a war to fight so the new Nieuport fighters began arriving at the front in early 1917.  From this beginning, the last of the Nieuport front-line fighters continued to serve throughout the war and after the armistice in the markings of several nations.

Yakovlev Fighters of World War II

Published: June 5th, 2015     
Yakovlev Fighters of World War II
Author: Yefrim Gordon, Sergey Komissarov, and Dmitriy Komissarov
Reviewed by: Hub Plott, IPMS# 31328
Company: Hikoki Publications

This book is the comprehensive history of the fighters produced by the Yakolev Design Bureau during World War Two. The Yak-1 first flew in 1940 under the designation I-26, changing to the now familiar Yak-1 when production began at the end of that year. The authors trace the development of these designs and offer the reader a comprehensive history from drawing board to final use. Ever wonder why the Yak-3 was actually produced after the Yak-9? It is all here.

The book is divided into 9 chapters. Chapter one is comprised of 58 pages and deals with the design, development and use of the Yak1. This begins with the I-26 initial variant and the loss and death of Yakolev’s chief test pilot Yulian Piontkovsky. Each variant and weapons system is covered.

Chapter two covers the I-28, I-30 and heavy fighter projects. These 14 pages deal with some prototypes and dead-end Yakolev developments

Mitsubishi A6M Zero

Published: May 25th, 2015     
Mitsubishi A6M Zero
Author: Artur Juszczak
Reviewed by: Dick Montgomery, IPMS# 14003
Company: Mushroom Model Publications

Considered by many to be the most famous aircraft used by the Japanese in World War II, the Zero is the subject of hundreds of books. And yet, with all of the information already available on the A6M this book, illustrated and authored by Artur Juszczak will make an excellent addition to your research library.

The advertising literature for this publication indicates that drawings and data have been pulled from original technical manuals, with dimensional details and images gathered from surviving airframes located hi museums. These pictures and details cover the aircraft inside and out.

I found that the advertising for this book was quite accurate. The images are outstanding and will prove very helpful to the modeler, showing interior and exterior colors, color demarcation lines. The book goes far beyond what one would expect after having read the advertising.

Aircraft Pictorial - F4U-1 Corsair Volume 2

Published: May 25th, 2015     
Aircraft Pictorial - F4U-1 Corsair Volume 2
Author: Dana Bell
Reviewed by: Pablo Bauleo, IPMS# 46363
Company: Classic Warships Publishing

Dana Bell has proven over and over again to be one of the best authors when it comes down to aircraft details. This book is yet another testament to that.

This volume covers the “raised canopy” version of the Corsair, or the definitive WWII version of the Corsair: the -1A, -1C and -1D, plus the British and New Zealand versions as well.

The first few pages of the book have a short (too short if I might say) description of the raised canopy airframes, their main systems and differences with the birdcage and within the A/C/D versions.

It also includes a list of every serial number, changes to the airframes within each serial number ranges and manufacturers. This list could be the ultimate source of information for the modeler that wants to ensure his/her model will be an exact replica of a given tail number.

After all that written detail -which left me wishing for more- the book moves into the Pictorial phase, including both full airframe views/walk-arounds style photo, plus close up images.

Scale Aircraft Modelling, Vol. 37, Issue 3

Published: May 24th, 2015     
Scale Aircraft Modelling,  Vol. 37, Issue 3
Reviewed by: Dave Morrissette, IPMS# 33643
Company: Scale Aircraft Modelling

The new format continues to change to even more history interspersed with the modeling. The banner at the top of the cover even states "The Best for Modelling and Reference". The blue gray background are even more prevalent including the cover. The old structure and build types are gone and this concentrates more on feature articles.

The first feature article by Andy McCabe and is a test shot build of the new Revell 1/32 FW190 F-8. The finished engine OOB is awesome and detail overall is superb. The engine access panels even open to display the kits engine and all for a very reasonable price.

Richard Bolingbroke goes full bore with a two kits builds of Eduard 1/48 Hellcat series with a F6F-3 and an F6F-5. To top it off, he summarizes the wing fold kits that have been produced and uses the Wolfpack set on both to do the kits "at ease".

Part 3 of the UN Observation Post build by Derek Griffiths focuses of the setting itself with construction of the buildings, the base itself. He also shows construction of pots, pear plants and all the little things that make this diorama awesome.

The British Army in Afghanistan 2006-14 / Task Force Helmand

Published: May 23rd, 2015     
The British Army in Afghanistan 2006-14 / Task Force Helmand
Author: Leigh Neville
Reviewed by: Phil Peterson, IPMS# 8739
Company: Osprey Publishing

Operation Herrick is what the British Army labeled their deployments to Afghanistan in support of the US and other NATO nations.

This 64 page soft cover book takes a look at the deployments to the Helmand Province which is the largest of the 34 provinces that make up Afghanistan.  It is also one of the more dangerous areas with a lot of action taking place in the Green Zone, an agricultural area along the Helmand River.

The book follows along chronologically through the years indicating which units were deployed for each Operation Herrick, their equipment and some of the battles that were waged.  The photographs illustrate the uniforms and vehicles but are small and hard to make out details.  Luckily there are three pages of illustrations that describe the uniforms in more detail.  These are backed up with three more pages of illustrations of the ground vehicles in use though the details in these drawings seem a little vague.  Lastly we have an action painting of the Pathfinder Platoon in action in May of 2006 and a representative image of troops in contact in the Green Zone.