My thanks to Ray Mehlberger for providing this review.
Classic Warbirds No.13 : D-Day to Berlin
Author: Malcolm Laird
Mushroom Model Publications is based in the UK. They have all their books printed in English in Sandomierz Poland by Stratus. Stratus also does their own series of books in Polish and English. Apparently Ventura also is associated with Stratus as this book was sent to me directly from Stratus. It was packaged in several layers of heavy cardboard along with a second book. Both books arrived in pristine condition.
This book is soft cover and 72 pages long in 6 ½” x 9” page format.
“From D-Day to Berlin” is a revised and expanded reprint of Classic Warbirds No. 5. Most of the new material is Luftwaffe “broken eagle” photos from 1945 and an RAF Beaufighter story with previously unpublished photos from private collections. Stories from the mid 1944 until the post war occupation force are included. When possible, each chapter is based on interviews with individuals who were there. The book endeavours to avoid repeating “potted histories” of various air battles.
For the fighter squadrons of the RAF’s Second Tactical Air Force and the USAAF 8th and 9th Air Forces this period was particularly intense. From supporting the Normandy invasion itself and later encountering increased Luftwaffe opposition as the air war was fought increasingly over German soil.
Add to this the increasing sophistication and sheer magnitude of the 8th Air Force strategic daytime bombing campaign over the Third Reich. From these campaigns comes the content of this book and a wealth of material for modellers and aviation enthusiasts alike.
Where possible, each chapter is from the perspective of individuals who were there. Each story is illustrated with many photos. There are 110 black and white wartime photos in the book. Fifty-six of these photos are of pilots and crew members in front of various aircraft. There is one photo of the No. 451 Squadron logo.
Aircraft shown in the photos are: Mustang III, Beaufighter, the tail of a Ju-88, Seafire L.III, Liberator, Hellcat, Typhoon Mk. Ib, Spitfire Mk. IXc, Spitfire IX, Spitfire LF.XVI, Spitfire VII, P-51D, P-51B, P-51D-5, P-51C, Mosquito NF.Mk. 30, Spitfire FR. XIV, FW-190F-8, Gloster Meteor Mk. II and Mk. III, Hawker Tempest Mk.V, Bf-110G-4, Me-410, Mosquito NF.XVII, P-61 “Black Widow”, Ju-88G-6, Do-17, Siebel Si-204D, Bf-109G.
Colour profile illustrations are:
- A 5-view of a Spitfire Mk. VII named “Isabel II” with a line drawing of the cockpit and retractable tail wheel. This aircraft was flown by Flight Lieutenant Jack Cleland.
- A Mosquito NF. XVII
- A Spitfire Mk. XVI as a 2 view.
- A Spitfire Mk. IXc
- A Spitfire FR. XIV
- A P-51c as a 2-view and a 3-view.
- A Hawker Tempest Mk. V as a 2-view and illustrations of upper and lower invasion stripe patterns for the wings.
- A P-51D as a 3-view, with nose caption “OL FLAK JO”.
- A F-6D as a 3-view, with nose caption “Lil Margaret”.
- A Spitfire LF. XVI as a 4-view and a 1-view.
- A Beaufighter TF-X
- A Spitfire FR. XIV as a 2-view
On the back cover of the book are 6 more color profiles. They are:
- A Seafire L. III
- A Hawker Tempest
- A Mosquito NF-30
- A FW-190D-9
- A Beaufighter Mk. X
There is a loose sheet inserted into the back of this book that has the bibliography at the top and shows the cover arts for 5 other aircraft books that Ventura does: Spitfire Star of Israel, Spitfire Camouflage and Markings, Classic Warbirds No. 8 Pacific Twins, Classic Warbirds No.9 Fighter Archive and Classic Warbirds No. 12 The Anzacs.
I want to thank Dr. Roger M. Wallsgrove, Editor-in-Chief of Mushroom Model Publications (MMP) and the folks at Stratus and Ventura for this review copy.
Classic Warbirds No. 13 : D-Day to Berlin
Author: Malcolm Laird
Mushroom Model Publications/Ventura/Stratus (www.mmpbooks.biz)