Publications

Reviews of books or magazines relating to scale modeling.

Operation Market Garden Paratroopers Vol. 1

Published: December 15th, 2016     
Operation Market Garden Paratroopers Vol. 1
Author: Piotr Witkowski
Reviewed by: Frank Landrus, IPMS# 35035
Company: Mushroom Model Publications

This tome appears to be Piotr Witkowski’s first book in English. I’ve found two prior books in Polish: Polskie jednostki powietrzno-desantowe na zachodzie (Bellona, 2009) and a second edition of this book titled: Spadochroniarze Sosabowskiego : Dzieje polskich jednostekpowietrznodesantowych 1939-1945 (Bellona, 2012). Volume 2 has already been scheduled for a 2017 release by Piotr Witkowski that will focus on armament and equipment used in Operation Market Garden.

This book focuses on the uniforms and accessories used by 1st Independent Parachute Brigade. Created in September 1941 under the command of Major General Stanislaw Sosabowski, their original mission was to parachute into Poland to liberate their home country. The British had other ideas and persuaded them to be a unit under Allied (British) command. After many military snafus, they were finally sent into action as part of Operation Market Garden in September of 1944. Casualties in the first few days were high, but their presence helped divert some 2,500 German troops from annihilating the British 1st Airborne Division.

M50 Ontos and M56 Scorpion 1956-1970

Published: December 14th, 2016     
M50 Ontos and M56 Scorpion 1956-1970
Author: Kenneth W. Estes
Reviewed by: Bill Kluge, IPMS# 45849
Company: Osprey Publishing

The Cold War produced a number of unusual weapons systems, and few were more unusual than the M50 Ontos (a Greek word meaning “entity” or “thing”). In the aftermath of the Korean War, The M50 Ontos and its cousin, the M56 Scorpion, were developed to fulfill the role of Tank Destroyers, a service corps left to languish following the end of World War 2. Both the Army and the Marine Corps had been disappointed by their difficulty in stopping Russian made armor in Korea, and the prospect of thousands of Soviet tanks flooding across the plains of central Europe gave rise to the re-establishment of the dedicated tank destroyer concept.

The 1916 Battle of the Somme Reconsidered

Published: December 13th, 2016     
The 1916 Battle of the Somme Reconsidered
Author: Petter Liddle
Reviewed by: Jarrod Booth, IPMS# 44739
Company: Casemate Publishing

“The 1916 Battle of the Somme Reconsidered” is a revision of a book written twenty four years ago by Peter Liddle, which benefits from more recently acquired research and information. It is a high quality, hard cover book. Peter Liddle is an historian of the First and Second World Wars, who has concentrated on personal experience of the men and women who took part in these conflicts.

The book was of great interest to me, as my grandfather fought in the “Great War”, and indeed was involved in trench fighting on the Somme. He was a very proper, jolly English gentleman, and held the rank of Sergeant. After the war, he emigrated to Australia. He had a fabulous life, and passed away at the age of 92.

Douglas C-54/R5D Skymaster and DC-4

Published: December 13th, 2016     
Douglas C-54/R5D Skymaster and DC-4
Author: Charles Stafrace; Illustrator: Richard J. Caruana
Reviewed by: Frank Landrus, IPMS# 35035
Company: Guideline Publications

Warpaint’s latest is their standard A4 format softbound publication that is 92 pages (excluding covers) on the Douglas C-54/R5D Skymaster and DC-4. I counted 213 photographs (141 in color) along with 34 of Richard J. Caruana’s color profiles. Richard J. Caruana also contributes the centerfold (eight A4 pages) that features nine line drawings, all in 1/72 scale.

The Gladius: The Roman Short Sword

Published: December 10th, 2016     
The Gladius: The Roman Short Sword
Author: M.C. Bishop
Reviewed by: Frank Landrus, IPMS# 35035
Company: Osprey Publishing

The Gladius by M. C. Bishop is his first book for Osprey Publishing and probably not his last (indeed his next book on the Roman heavy javelin is due to be released in May 2017). Mike has been writing since 1983 primarily on archaeology. As part of his interest in archaeology, he has become a prolific artist in black and white illustrations, some of which are found in this book. Many of his works are available or referenced on his web site, www.mcbishop.co.uk . He spends his free time doing freelance work in publishing (editing, typesetting, proofreading, etc.) and runs a considerable number of websites primarily devoted to the Roman military. Interestingly, in additions to being a model builder (Airfix), Mike Bishop has been flying in gliders since 2004.