Aerodata International No 1 "B-24 Liberator"
Aerodata International's "Consolidated B-24 Liberator Early Models" (number
11). Published in 1979 and Witten by Philip J. R. Moyes. This book describes
itself as a 20 page, self contained, monograph, A-4 sized booklet containing
1/72nd scale plans, colour artwork, sketches and large photographs with
narrative and technical data. This is a reasonably
accurate description. It
is woefully thin at only 20 pages but the scale plans make up for it. The
photo's are black and white and there aren't many of them for obvious
reasons. These things pop up cheap on EBay every now and then so you should
probably pick them up when you can as they are recommended for the plans.
However they are dated and very thin. There are probably better value and
more modern books out there so shop around first.
Ian Allan Publishing "The Soldier"
Published by Ian Allan Publishing in 1994. Photographs by Dan Patterson,
text by Paul Perkins and Michelle Crean. You get sixty-six pages in a very
large format. This boasts many very large full luscious colour pictures of
the sort you expect to see in wall calendars on the topic. This was Ian
Allan's attempt at doing something a little different for the boring
'coffee-table format' by minimising the text and maximising the lovely
colour photo's. They called it their "Living History Series" and they only
did one other - "The Lady" devoted to the B-17 reviewed elsewhere in this
section. This tries to be an evocative work with carefully staged scenes of
actors dressed up as
War Two Pilots, Crew and Ground Crew. This is also useful for the model
maker but you do wonder what the audience is for a work like this. It is all
very 'pretty'. The internal colour photo's are glorious and useful but the
books does kick-off with a brief history with a handful of black and
white photo's. The books breaks down, from then on, by crew station. You
have to remember that the aircraft shown is a restoration hence this work
should be checked against other wartime sources & references. Apart from
these criticisms I would recommend this for the model makers as you are
unlikely to find better interior colour photo's of the Liberator.
Martin Bowman "B-24 Liberator 1939-45"
Published by Patrick Stephens Limited in 1979 (this edition in 1989).
Despite being republished in 1989 this has done nothing for this book as it
remains firmly rooted in the 1970's. This is a 136 page work of stern
research on the type giving you the wartime service history. As such this is
not aimed at the model
and is exceptionally dull unless you wish to research a particular campaign.
The photo's are all black and white and quite large. However they are not
printed on a glossy paper hence are not of the highest quality. There is no
walkaround or scale plans. No colour artwork. Almost nothing to commend it
to the model maker. However, there may be a handful of photo's of specific
aircraft that may interest the occasional reader.
Edward Shacklady "Consolidated B-24 Liberator"
Published by Cerberus Publishing in 2002. Edward is quite a prolific
author on a variety of aviation subjects. This book offers 160 pages
of mostly text and black and white photo's. There is a center
section of colour pictures and side-view artworks covering 16 separately
numbered pages. This appears to be added as an afterthought.
However, if you pick this up cheaply off EBay for a fiver then these
16 pages are worth it as the rest is just padding for the modeller.
Sure you get a complete cradle to grave type history with a few line
drawings but there is little here not better covered elsewhere. A
light-weight 'coffee table', stocking filler, but not really
Squadron/Signal "B-24 Liberator In Action"
Published in 1975 for the sumly price of $4.95. Written by Steve
Birdsall and illustrated by Don Greer. It consists of the
type-typical 49 pages with colour covers and center section. Type
development is tracked through various
line drawings. There is very limited text so the black and white
pictures tend to be extremely large - filling up entire pages. This
is great but there are no detailed shots of the airframe inside or
out. You always know what you are getting from the "In Action"
series from the mid 1970's and this is it. Dull.
Warbirdtech "Consolidated B-24 Liberator"
Published by Speciality Press Publishers and Wholesalers in 1996. Written by
Frederick A. Johnsen. You get 100 pages to the "Warbirdtech" formula. So you
only get a brief center section of just four pages of colour photo's and
these aren't very useful. There are no scale plans or colour artworks.
Instead you get non-glossy black and white photo's with a lot of cheap and
cheerful line drawn diagrams. These diagrams turn the aircraft inside
out so this is valuable for the super-detailer if you have no other source
of information. However, all such sketches are secondary data sources in
nature and you need better photo's than you get here. However, this is a
slightly better effort than the Warbirdtech book on the B-1 also reviewed on
this web site. Oddly enough the book devotes pages and pages just to every
possible detail of the gun turrets with other airframe areas barely get a
look in. Somewhat patchy but OK if used in conjunction with other photo
Frederick A. Johnsen "Big Bombers of WWII" (B-24)
Published by Lowe and B. Hould (I assume that is a joke) in 1998. Yes, I
know that is not a picture of a B-24 on the cover. This is not 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 is described as a
Liberator "buff" whatever that is. The B-24 section takes up the center
third of the book. This is from page 147
page 285 making this a 138 pages long. Like the other two sections this is
liberally (forgive the pun) sprinkled with gorgeous colour photographs.
Even the black and white photo's are crisply printed in glossy-style. It is
quite heavy on text in sections and takes you from development and
production through its service history, in various theatres, through to post
war service and survivors today. You get practically no interior shots, no
diagrams, no scale plans, no walkaround and no colour artwork. It isn't that
sort of book. Get a copy if you can for the colour pictures. Lovely.