Curtiss P-40 Warhawk - The Famous Flying Tigers Fighter

Published: August 9th, 2017     
Product Image
Front Cover
Author: David Doyle
Reviewed by: 
Frank Landrus, IPMS# 35035
Company: Schiffer Publishing
ISBN #: 0764354329
Other Publication Information: Hard Bound ; 9” x 9”, 112 pages
Price: $19.99
Product / Stock #: LOW-3002

David Doyle's latest book is one of the initial entries into a new series called 'Legends of Warfare' with entries in Ground, Naval, and Aviation. The first Ground book is focused on the Panzerkampfwagen IV, the first Naval book is on the USS Yorktown (CV-5), and the first two Aviation books are on the Curtiss P-40 Warhawk (#4) and Douglas TBD Devastator (#3). The first and second in the series (Wayne Mutza's Bell 47/H-13 Sioux Helicopter is #1 and David Doyle's Grumman F4F Wildcat at #2) are scheduled to release later this year.

After many years of being published in enthusiast publications focused on military vehicle restorations, David Doyle 'graduated' to full-fledged books in 2003. His first book was a hefty 512 page history of US military vehicles. He has now had more than 100 books published in military vehicles, aviation and naval topics. David and his wife Denise have amassed a collection of ten Vietnam era military vehicles that still displays at shows. In June 2015, was honored with the Military Vehicle Preservation Association's Bart Vanderveen Award, given in recognition of "...the individual who has contributed the most to the historic preservation of military vehicles worldwide." Be sure to check out David's website at where you can see and buy at a discounted price off of MSRP all his books that are still available.

The front and back covers features color photographs of the American Airpower Museum's Curtiss P-40M 43-27483 that was originally transferred to the Royal Canadian Air Force and designated the Kittyhawk Mk IV with serial number 845. Restored and renamed "The Jacky C", it is one of the few flying P-40 Warhawks. You get 112 glossy pages graced by clear, well captioned photographs. I counted 135 well captioned photographs; 24 in color and 111 in black and white.

The Curtiss P-40 was made famous by the American Volunteer Group which was a unit of the Chinese Air Force piloted by American pilots. These Flying Tigers, decorated with a shark's eyes and mouth, were trained to use the Warhawk's strengths which made them highly successful, especially given the defeats that the Americans were suffering early on in the war. The P-40 Warhawk served in every theatre in the war and was utilized by over two dozen countries, ending with a total production run of 13,738 aircraft.

David Doyle starts off with Curtiss' efforts to upgrade the Curtiss P-36 Hawk. The tenth P-36A was modified to use an Allison V-1710 which became the Army Air Corps XP-40. The XP-40's first flight was achieved on October 14, 1938. Each major variant of the Warhawk is introduced with text, followed by photographs with informative captions. A nice 'Walk-Around' is presented in the P-40E chapter of a restored P-40E that unfortunately was destroyed in a fatal crash on April 5, 2009. David Doyle addresses each major variant in its own chapter from the XP-40 through the XP-40Q as depicted in the following Table of Contents:

  • Acknowledgments
  • Introduction
  • XP-40
  • P-40 (-CU) [Page 14]
  • P-40A and P-40B [Page 26]
  • P-40C
  • P-40D
  • P-40E [Page 48, 57]
  • P-40F
  • P-40G
  • P-40K [Page 77]
  • P-40L
  • P-40M [Page 91]
  • P-40N
  • XP-40Q

One of the photographs I found quite interesting was of a P-40F-CU (41-13602) that was used as a test plane for different designs of the vertical tailplane and radiator placement.

This is a gorgeous hard-bound book and is well worth the money. David Doyle provides lots of detailed photographs with detailed captions. I am definitely looking for more monographs in this new and affordable series of books from Schiffer.

Highly recommended!

My thanks to David Doyle Books at ( ) and IPMS/USA for the chance to review this great book.

  • Back Cover
    Back Cover
  • Page 14
    Page 14
  • Page 26
    Page 26
  • Page 48
    Page 48
  • Page 57
    Page 57
  • Page 77
    Page 77
  • Page 91
    Page 91