The Vulcan Story


This is one of a series of excellent pocket books from Sutton Publishing. It tells the story of the Vulcan V-Bomber and the efforts to restore one survivor to full display flying condition. The concise text packs a great deal of information into a compact book, illustrated copiously by some first class bandw and full colour images. The author follows the story of the Vulcan from its first career as one of three V-Bomber types that provided the British nuclear deterrent until the introduction of the submarine launched Polaris missile system. It continues with the story of the use of the Vulcan for maritime reconnaissance, as an aerial refuelling tanker and as a test bed for Concorde engines. In the autumn of its service life, the Vulcan was used on the daring Black Buck raids where Vulcans few from the UK with in-flight refuelling to drop 1,000 lb bombs on Port Stanley airfield in the Falklands to deny the runway to Argentine jet combat aircraft during the campaign to eject Argentine invaders from British soil. Finally, the Vulcan became a much loved feature of air shows and could have ended as scrap. The book concludes with the story of the project to fully return a Vulcan to display flying and lists all the museums

The Victorian Summer of the Clyde Steamers


An interesting book on a subject that has received less attention than it deserved. The period 1864 to 1888 was not so much a Victorian Summer as a Golden Age of Clyde Steamers. It should be remembered that the pioneering Comet only started to voyage between the harbours of the Firth of Clyde in 1812. In the two decades from the mid 1860s, the classic Clyde Paddle Steamer provided fast and affordable transport in the Firth of Clyde. Pateron has assembled a most interesting collection of information on this period, illustrated by black and white photographs from the early years of photography. Also reproduced are facsimiles of the Steamer Companies’ advertisements, the pennants and funnel markings and a wealth of detail on the personalities and events of this exciting period in steam ship development and employment in the Clyde

The Urban Spacemen


Daniel Xavier has written a provoking book on the first five years of the Blair Government. He has taken the approach of presenting some of the many differing views expressed on this administration and drawn some conclusions. As a political work there will be many very different reactions to the book reflecting the political position of each reader. The presentation of a selection of views and facts means that no reader will completely agree or disagree with what has been written. In addition to the clearly presented text, there is a selection of cartoons from Luke to illustrate points. Nighthawk Publishing have been pioneering electronic publishing. This is the first in a series of political comment and review titles and has been set in what appears to be the Nighthawk Publishing house style that is an interesting and innovative approach

The Trafalgar Roll


This roll was first published in 1913. The bi-centennial celebrations of Trafalgar have been producing a number of interesting new insights and also prompting a number of important reprints. This book provides a roll of ships and their officers with an indication of those killed and wounded. This book was originally intended as a centenary tribute but was painstakingly researched and not published until 1913 by George Allen and Company Limited. The author had to deal with some of the frustrations of naval tradition a century before when it was by no means proof of service that an individual was listed as a ships officer. The scale of his study was much more than is obvious from the text, particularly in attempting to follow the careers beyond Trafalgar. It was not unusual for officers to be beached on half pay or retire on full pay, only to turn up in some other service where commissions were bought

The TBF/TBM Avenger Units of World War 2


This book mainly concentrates on the Avenger’s use by the US Navy in the Pacific theatre. The informative text is enlivened by many first hand accounts from the initial test pilots through to those who flew the Avenger in combat. The Avenger’s FAA and RNZAF service is also briefly covered. With 36 colour profiles and 100 b/w photos the book is well illustrated

The Terror Of Tobermory


Richard Baker’s biography of Vice Admiral Sir Gilbert Stephenson KBE CB CMG covers the tale of Sir Gilbert’s two naval careers. The account of his first career from which he retired in 1929 as a Rear Admiral provides a fascinating insight into the RN during its imperial heyday. After 10 years on the retired list during which time he was promoted to Vice Admiral Sir Gilbert returned to active service as a Commodore RNR after the outbreak of WWII. For 5 years he was based in Tobermory as Commodore HMS Western Isles

The Titanic Disaster – As Reported In The British National Press April-July 1912


This is one of the most interesting books to have been published in recent years on this popular subject. It essentially comprises extracts from the Daily Sketch with additional material from the Daily Mail, The Times, and the Daily Graphic. These extracts tell the story of the Titanic disaster as it unfolded and then its subsequent evects such as the lifeboat strike onboard her sister ship Olympic by the firemen and greasers. Alternative aspects of the story such as the various stories of psychic warnings are also covered. This book is highly recommended for anyone looking for a different view of this sorry tale

The Time Capsule Fighter Corsair KD431


This is a must for all Corsair buffs. The book will also appeal strongly to all readers who are interested in the preservation and conservation of heritage. It is essential reading for aviation enthusiasts and those interested in aerospace engineering. The author is Curator of Aircraft at the world famous Fleet Air Arm Museum located within the Royal Navy’s HMS Heron airbase. The museum has a most remarkable collection of naval aviation artefacts from the first pioneering days of British naval aviators and curiously includes a Concorde SST and supersonic research aircraft. One unusual feature of the FAA Museum is that the public can get close enough to touch the exhibits. The Museum also has a rare attitude to preservation and conservation. Great efforts are made to ensure not only authenticity for all displays, but to use the artefacts to tell the stories of the development and practices of naval aviation from design and production to operation and archaeology. The subject of the book is one specific Chance Vought Corsair KD431. It is an absorbing detective story. When the Corsair first entered US service it was regarded very much as a hot rod by the US Navy who believed that it was too fast to operate from carriers at sea. It was only when the FAA began operating Corsairs from their smaller British carriers that the USN decided to issue the aircraft to their squadrons afloat as well as to Marine squadrons ashore. The Corsair proved to be an outstanding naval aircraft and Morris has included accounts from former Corsair pilots who remember the aircraft with great affection

The Sword and the Grail


The foundations of what was to become a major religion known as Christianity are shrouded in myth and conflicting documents. The publication of the Gospel according to Judas and the fictional works that are based on the suppressed documents held by the Roman Church have all combined to introduce fresh controversy and conspiracy theory. Sinclair adds yet another dimension. It is unlikely that anyone will ever be able to prove conclusively any version of the story of Jesus and therefore there will always be a multitude of beliefs based on particular versions of what is a semi-historical story. This extends beyond Christianity because other religions shared some of the same roots and are affected by new views of the Christian story. Christianity and Islam developed to become competing religions from common roots and beliefs. What we do know is that the first accounts of the story of Jesus were written after his death. There is dispute about how long after but it is generally accepted that the first accounts were fifty years after his death and written originally in Aramaic. Subsequently they were translated into Greek, Latin and Egyptian, before being translated into modern European languages. As a result, there may be many errors of translation accounting for the differing versions. Several religions have suppressed ancient documents that do not support the version of events accepted by theologians. Any who disagree with established teaching are branded as heretic