Top positive review
6 people found this helpful
Excellent overview of 'planes, tactics, technics and strategy
on 1 June 2011
The book: what you notice first are the colour side views of 174 aircraft types (and a few observation balloons and zeppelins), plus quite a few of the same type in different schemes. Each image is accompanied by a small box (think top trump cards!) with specifications. They're arranged partly in chronological order, partly to go with the chapter they illustrate - and these chapters deal with early days, start of combat, bombing, maritime aviation, plus separate treatments of the Eastern front, the Middle East, and the Italian front. These are full of interesting notes on tactics and strategy, comparisons between the various aircraft types, weaponry, technology, statistics. Occasionally there are plates with multiple very small 'plane profiles to show the various markings within a squadron or Jasta, down to wheelcover colours.
My opnion: the best overview I have come across. There are a few shortcomings, but they don't detract (well, not much) from the fact that this is the best book on the subject I have seen. Not all types are illustrated (I would have loved a picture of the Giant bomber, or of R-planes); you only get a side view, so for modellers it is of limited use - though you do get multiple schemes for some of the more famous types. To have so much coverage (174 types, I repeat!) of the rapidly evolving aircraft of these five years is great. But for individual types (and those all-important top views) I still will go back to my Aircraft Profiles, dating back to the 60s and 70s. As an overview, for a reasonable price, and most importantly, available version, this book is still excellent value for money.