Publications

Reviews of books or magazines relating to scale modeling.

SBD Dauntless: Douglas’s US Navy and Marine Corps Dive Bombing in World War II

Published: September 28th, 2019     
SBD Dauntless: Douglas’s US Navy and Marine Corps Dive Bombing in World War II
Author: David Doyle
Reviewed by: Michael Reeves, IPMS# 511239
Company: David Doyle books

I have been interested in the SBD Dauntless for as long as I have been modeling. In these 20+ years, I have collected any book on my favorite aircraft as I could grab up. For as long as I have been modeling, I have also come to appreciate David Doyle's excellent reference books on all matters of military subjects and they have become a go-to source whenever I wanted to learn more. The fact that his expertise could be married to the Slow but Deadly in the form of a new book on this truly significant dive bomber makes me truly happy. The fact that the book contains so many photos I have never seen makes things even that much better.

After a brief introduction highlighting the development of the prototypes for the Dauntless, including some clear shots of the XBT-1 and XBT-2, we get chapters that break down each variant of the SBD- the -1, -2, -3, -4, -5, and -6, as well as an excellent chapter on the Army version of the Dauntless- the A-24 Banshee. Each chapter of each variant provides a description of the features significant to each one--including the modifications that were made in each successive model.

Letters from a Lancaster Gunner

Published: September 28th, 2019     
Letters from a Lancaster Gunner
Author: Helen Thompson
Reviewed by: Michael Reeves, IPMS# 51129
Company: Casemate Publishing

This book is not your typical historical account toting statistics, data charts, and emotionally detached accounts of RAF Bomber Command operations. I admit there is nothing wrong with those types of books- they have their place, and I have enjoyed them in the past when researching and educating myself for a build or idea. This is a narrative that is based on letters between a young, hopeful RAF turret gunner named Joseph 'Mac' Thompson and his family- mainly letters home to his mum. The book is written by his niece, Helen Thompson.

It is not emotionally detached and you cannot be emotionally detached when reading it. From growing up in Birmingham, through many trials of training and wartime exploits, through trying to help his widowed mum support his family and balance that with a love affair with a girl from Liverpool, one cannot help but get truly involved with the deep emotions expressed in the letters between them all. Each chapter provides a narrative of each event in the book and concludes with a photocopy of the letter that the chapter describes.

North American Aviation P-51B/C & F-6C Mustang

Published: September 22nd, 2019     
North American Aviation P-51B/C & F-6C Mustang
Author: Robert Pęczkowski; Illustrators: Artur Juszczak and Dariusz Karnas
Reviewed by: Frank Landrus, IPMS# 35035
Company: MMP Books

This tome is the latest in the Yellow series of aircraft monographs. Originally in a smaller format, ~6.3" by 9.3", the Yellow series seems to have migrated to the "Big Yellow" series in a new larger A4 (~8.25" x 11.625") size. Lately, it seems that the "Big Yellow" series has become just the Yellow series, but has retained the larger A4 format.

MMP was founded in 1996 by Roger Wallsgrove, to publish "Mushroom Model Magazine". This quarterly modeling magazine was developed from "Mushroom Monthly", a club newsletter which ran from 1985 to 1995, achieving a worldwide reputation for quality articles, fearless and honest reviews, and a great sense of humor. From 1997 the magazine was produced in collaboration with Robert Peczkowski and Artur Juszczak (Stratus), which meant a big leap in print quality and design. MMP expanded into book publication in 1999, and since then they have built up a list of books on aircraft and aviation, naval, military vehicles, and military history. MMPBooks are distributed in North America by Casemate Publications.

M551 Sheridan - Legends of Warfare Series

Published: September 21st, 2019     
M551 Sheridan - Legends of Warfare Series
Author: David Doyle
Reviewed by: Ben Morton, IPMS# 47301
Company: David Doyle books

In the introduction to one of David Doyle's latest offerings, he writes: The M551 Sheridan is often referred to as a light tank, but in actuality it was an armored reconnaissance/airborne assault vehicle. The M551 was designed to be a lightweight, amphibious, air-dropable vehicle armed with a massive 152 mm gun that doubled as a rocket launcher. The gun launcher was designed to fire the MGM-51 Shillelagh antitank missile, or 152 mm conventional rounds with a combustible cartridge case. The vehicles saw extensive use in Vietnam, Operation Just Cause in Panama (where they saw their only combat air drop), and Operations Desert Shield and Desert Storm. The Sheridan ended its service with the US Army masquerading as Soviet Bloc vehicles at the National Training Center.

Now if David Doyle's name sounds familiar you might harken back to the M551 Sheridan in Action book published by Squadron, cause it's the same guy. This 9x9 offering from the Legends of Warfare series has a hard cover binding and contains 231 color and black & white photographs from a variety of sources. After a brief introductory chapter, the tome is divided into three parts:

Chieftain British Cold War Main Battle Tank

Published: September 21st, 2019     
Chieftain British Cold War Main Battle Tank
Author: Robert Jackson
Reviewed by: Allan Murrell, IPMS# 49715
Company: Casemate Publishing

This is another book in the Tank Craft series which details tanks and also covers model kits and accessories to build the tanks covered in the book. This book covers the Chieftain a British Cold War main battle tank. The Chieftain was designed in the late 1950's as the replacement for the successful Centurion tank. It was believed to be the best tank in service with the NATO allies during the 1960's and 70's.

I found this book contains so much detailed information and pictures of the Chieftain and its variants. The Profile pictures are a particular favorite and has given me a few great ideas of the color schemes for when I build my Takom and Tamiya Kits.

It covers the use of the tank during the Iran- Iraq war and the Gulf war.

The chapters on the different model builds and kits are of great interest and will provide a good resource when modelling this tank.

I was impressed at the amount of information and history found in the pages of this extremely enjoyable book. The pictures along are worth the cost of the book. I will find this book indispensible in my library of armor books.

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