Squadron/Signal "B-17 In Action"
Published in 1984. Written by Larry Davis and illustrated by Don
Greer. You get 57 pages including colour covers and center section -
slightly larger than the usual. You get the usual selection of line
drawings illustrating the changes between sub-types. You get also
of large black and white photo's plus three sets of line-drawn
layouts of major types. There are no scale plans as such and no
colour photo's. Being slightly bigger than the average "In Action"
this is slightly better than the average. Obviously not as useful to
the modeller as the "Walkaround" but interesting nevertheless.
Squadron/Signal "B-17 Flying Fortress" Walkaround
Published in 1998 and written by Lou Drendel. Colour artwork by Don
Greer and illustrated by Ernesto Cumpian. An ideal companion to the
Verlinden publication (opposite) as it features machines based in
the U.S. This provides an interesting contrast across its 77 pages.
The book has many similar photo's to those already published in the
"In Action", ie, black and white and not to a 'walkaround'
standards. However, the detailed shots are clear, crisp and glossy.
You get a good selection of line drawings illustrating pertinent
type. Some of the black and white photo's are of World War Two
vintage with a few being detailed if a little fuzzy. This is useful
to compare against the preserved B-17's in colour. Sadly the lack of
colour does mean you can't really be sure of the true original
colours. You get some nice colour artwork (bigger than usual) by Don
but there is no scale plans (apart from a line-drawn layout with no
scale supplied). Good stuff.
Roger Freeman "B-17 Flying Fortress at War"
Published by Ian Allan in 1977. This book was a gift to me when I
was a child which shows how old it is. No doubt that Roger Freeman
is the guru on such topics but this book is firmly rooted in the
1970's. You get 192 pages and Roger's service history of the type.
Good black and white photo's cover the airframe both inside and out
whilst there are eight pages of colour photo's which
this book has much to commend it for the time it was created.
However, the colour photo's disappoint as they repeat the front and
rear covers whilst two pages are fuzzy and indistinct still frames
from cine film of almost no use to anyone. But it is a brave try for
1977! Being an "At War" the focus is on the service history rather
than the technical features of production. The photo's are large,
useful and the book is well put together. It is likeable if not
William N. Hess "Big Bombers of WWII" (B-17)
Published by Lowe and B. Hould (I assume that is a joke) in 1998.
Yes, I know that is a picture of a B-29 shown to the left. It isn't
a mistake! This looks like a book that brings together three
separate books into one package. However I see no evidence that the
three works were ever published separately. The three focus on the
B-17, B-24 and B-29 although only the B-29 features on the front
cover shown here. The Author was a B-17 waist gunner who was shot
down during the war and served his time out as a prisoner of war.
The B-17 section takes up the first third of the book up to page
143. The quality of the
of the photo's is just superb. This is a truly modern production and
care and attention has been lavished on it. You will find a
surprisingly high proportion of colour photo's dotted through and
there is one on roughly every ten pages or so. These are excellent.
The text takes you from development and production through to its
service and various parts of the world. Some post-war history is
taken in before there is a brief roundup of survivors around the
globe. A nice piece of work although generally lacking in interior
shots. Accept it, it isn't that sort of work. There are no colour
artworks, scale plans, diagrams or walkaround shots. However, it is
worth it for the lovely colour photo's.