Endeavour – The Story of Captain Cook’s First Great Voyage


Peter Aughton’s Endeavour is a fascinating tale of a legendary voyage of discovery. This highly readable story is enhanced by carefully chosen first hand accounts written by key members of Endeavour’s crew including the aristocratic botanist Joseph Banks, the artist Sydney Parkinson and Captain Cook himself. The astronomers out there will particularly enjoy the description of the preparations for the observation of the transit of Venus. While those who cruise will be fascinated by the story of Endeavour rounding Cape Horn and her voyage across the Pacific into the unknown



Encyclopaedia of Soviet Fighters 1939-1951


This book has been published in a French language and English editions. Histoire and Collections have established a reputation for the quality of their military history books and this is typical of that high standard. This work covers the fighters flown by Soviet pilots during WWII and continues the story to 1950, including the interesting hybrid power aircraft that attempted to introduce the jet engine without first abandoning the piston engine. To round the story off, ‘Exceptions’ covers the Yak-7R and the LaGG-3RTD-1



Early British Quick Firing Artillery


From reading the book, the attention to detail and love of subject steps out from the pages. Probably the author is an enthusiastic model maker. It is very difficult to fault a work of this quality covering a much neglected subject. Although the Introduction starts at 1346, this is essentially a story of the horse artillery used by the British and other armies from the end of the Nineteenth Century



Deep Water


You can’t help but admire the dogged determination of Moya and Alec Crawford to beat the world depth record for commercial cargo recovery. Their story begins with the 17 year old Moya travelling to the Scottish island of Foula to work on a croft for the summer. In this rural environment she meets and later marries Alec Crawford who was working as a salvage diver off Foula on the wreck of the White Star Liner Oceanic. Over the next twenty years the couple face an unenviable set of challenges presented by a cocktail of the marine environment, governmental hindrance and technological development



Dark Sky, Black Sea


Tells the story of the US Navy’s night and all weather operations beginning with the first night trials conducted in 1925 using USS Langley and 4 TS-1 single engine fighters. From there Brown follows the development of these operations through WWII and on into the Cold War including coverage of operations in Korea, Vietnam and the Gulf War. The text is supported by a number of B/W photographs while line drawings explain some of the procedures covered in the book




Dam Busters


An impressive and thoroughly researched account of the development of the bouncing bomb and its use against German dams. The raid was a huge propaganda success in 1943 and achieved material success in degrading German production by taking out hydro-electric capacity. This book is illustrated with some fine black and white photographs to support readable and comprehensive text. Those building a library of aerial bombardment may well wish to purchase a hard back edition, but this soft back edition brings the story to a wider audience by achieving a sub-£15 price without any loss of content


Conway’s All The World’s Fighting Ships 1947 – 1995

Replaces the previous two volume set covering the post war period in this authoritative series of reference books. The book lives up to its impressive title and provides listings of every warship in service during this period. For the majority of classes there is a specification table and a brief potted history together with either a photo or line drawing. For classes of major warships such as battleships or aircraft carriers there is usually both types of illustration. At the beginning of each national section there is an overview of that nation’s Navy during the post war years.





Crash Dive


The author served aboard HMS Safari for eighteen months from March 1942 as a Leading Telegraphist. This is a very important historical document because the author took photographs during the period and, against regulations, kept a diary. The result is a very accurate account of life aboard a submarine at war during the period. It is well written and conveys the excitement and the boredom of life aboard. The author provides insight into his attitudes and life which is rarely covered by historians and never as well. What also makes it rare and valuable is that it was written by a rating and not an officer. Usually, historians interviewing survivors years later have great difficulty in obtaining much useful information from ratings, partly because they rarely wrote down their experiences at the time, but mainly because they only saw a very tiny part of life aboard.





D-Day Ships


Much has been written about D-Day. This incredible logistics achievement often takes second place to the tales of courage and determination in the face of battle. Fundamental to the success was the construction of prefabricated harbours and under sea pipelines, supported by a great fleet of vessels from the smallest wooden ships, such as infantry landing craft and coastal forces vessels, to the greatest battleships. What the author has done in this the 60th anniversary and final full parade of veterans has been to look at the marine element of this great endeavour and the events of the most critical phase as the first troops stormed ashore and the reinforcements were shipped in to enable the beach head to be established, and expanded, the most critical phase of the operation. There is a brief review of the WWI and earlier WWII amphibious landings, before looking at the plan for Operation Overlord. After this setting of the scene, the author looks at the landing craft and the ships. In no small measure, Overlord benefited from the design of a new fleet of vessels designed expressly for the task of delivering troops and their heavy equipment successfully to defended beaches.