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Aircraft of the Aces 24

 

P-47 Thunderbolt Aces of the Eighth Air Force

 

 

by Jerry Scutts
with illustrations by Chris Davey

 

 

 

S u m m a r y

Publisher and Catalogue Details: Osprey Publishing Aircraft of the Aces No 24 - P-47 Thunderbolt Aces of the Eighth Air Force
by Jerry Scutts
with illustrations by Chris Davey
ISBN: 9781855327290
Media and Contents: Soft cover, 96 pages
Price: GBP£9.09 online from Osprey Publishing
Review Type: FirstRead
Advantages: Interesting range of photographs, enlightening first hand accounts, easy to read narrative, competent colour profiles.
Disadvantages:  
Conclusion: A good read for the enthusiast and a good reference for the modeller.


Reviewed by
Rodger Kelly

 
Osprey's P-47 Aces of the Eighth Air Force is available online from Squadron.com

 

FirstRead

 

This book from Osprey publishing is number 24 in their Aircraft of the Aces series.  Whilst it has been around since 1998 a scan of Hyperscale’s book review listing at http://www.kitreview.com/reviews.htm reveals that it had not been reviewed.

The Republic Aviation Corporation’s mighty Thunderbolt needs little in the way of introduction in that it was one of the mainstay fighter aircraft employed by the United States Army Air Force during World War Two.  Designed by Alexander Kartveli it entered service in June 1942 and flew its first combat sorties with the Eighth Air Force in April 1943.

 

  • P-47 Aces of the 8th Air Force Book Review by Rodger Kelly: Image
  • P-47 Aces of the 8th Air Force Book Review by Rodger Kelly: Image
  • P-47 Aces of the 8th Air Force Book Review by Rodger Kelly: Image
  • P-47 Aces of the 8th Air Force Book Review by Rodger Kelly: Image
  • P-47 Aces of the 8th Air Force Book Review by Rodger Kelly: Image
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If you know a little of the history of the Eighth Air Force you will probably be familiar with the names Dave Shilling, “Hub” Zemke, Robert Johnson, “Gabby” Gabreski, the term “Zemke’s Wolfpack, and the histories of the 4th, 56th and 78th Fighter Groups.  If you want to gain an understanding of how those names and units came to prominence this book will go a long way in telling you.

The book is logically laid out in that it presents a chronological history from 1943 to the end of the war in European Theatre in 1945 through the following chapters:

  • Early Days.  Getting to know the Thunderbolt and making the best use of its abilities.  Learning the escort trade and employment with the 4th, 56th and 78th Fighter Groups.
  • Extended Range.  July to September 1943 - Bomber escort into Germany.
  • Bloody Battles.  November 1943 through to February 1944 – The lessons have been learned and the scores rise.
  • Maximum Effort.  March to May 1944.  P-47 strength in the European Theatre at its zenith and the operations continue.
  • Build Up to D-Day and Beyond.  June to September 1944.
  • Arnhem and into Germany.  October 1944 to March 1945.
  • Final Clashes.  May 1945 and the end of operations.

The book is rounded out with an appendix that provides notes to the profiles illustrating the P-47s flown by the “aces” and a two-page spread of 1/72 scale line drawings of the P-47.

With regard to the aforementioned colour profiles, you are treated to 42 full colour ones that illustrate the aircraft flown by the pilots of the various Fighter Groups who flew the P-47 in the Eighth Air Force.

The book is lavishly illustrated with period black and white photos (107 images).  Fortunately for the aircraft enthusiast the European air war was well documented by the media and a fair few of these “posed” images have made their way into the book which is a good thing as they show the various pilots in the cockpits of their machines, the benefit of which is nice sharp close-up photos that show the detail that modellers crave for as reference material for their latest masterpiece.

The book consists of 96 pages printed on glossy paper between thin cardboard covers.

A good read for the enthusiast and a good reference for the modeller.

Thanks to Osprey Publishing for the review sample


Review Copyright 2010 by Rodger Kelly
Page Created 25 January, 2010
Last updated 26 January, 2010

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