North American P-51 Mustang Owners Workshop Manual

B1636

This is a book that deserves to sell strongly and will appeal to a wide readership. The Haynes military aviation workshop manuals are building into a valuable source of information. Once again a new title in the series has been launched that provides an overview of an important aircraft type.

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Apollo 11 Owner’s Workshop Manual

B1635

This manual at least lifts the gloom in showing what is possible and where the future may take us. This is a story of real heroes going where no man has gone before. It is a testament to man’s creative ability and the determination of a handful of people to take the next great step. It is impossible to read this work without awe and it is a book that deserves to be very widely read. The standard of illustration is excellent and the production does justice to the story. Highly recommended.

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USS Enterprise Owner’s Workshop Manual

B1634

The first reaction to this new book is that it is a bit of fun. Star trekies will regard it as a vital record of Star Trek technologies. It is also challenging to categorize for the Firetrench book reviews because reading through the book and looking at the excellent colour images, this really does have the feel of a manual describing a series of real space vehicles. It demonstrates the amount of thought that has to go into producing a durable and widely popular science fiction story.

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Avron Vulcan Owner’s Workshop Manual

B1633

Haynes have again used their well tried owner’s manual approach and produced a book which would not enable a team of engineers to keep a Vulcan flying, but provides an impressive view into the Vulcan, how its systems work and how it is flown. Colour is used throughout so there are some outstanding photographs in full colour. There are colour photographs of the cockpit area and many detailed drawings of components and system layouts. This is a book that every enthusiast will want to buy and it will appeal to many people who do not normally study aircraft books. A valuable addition to any aviation library.

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John Derry, The Story of Britain’s First Supersonic Pilot

B1632

The authors have provided an account of another forgotten pilot he deserved coverage and a firm place in aviation history. On 6 September 1948 Derry became the first British pilot to achieve supersonic flight as test pilot flying the VW120. Unlike the US supersonic flight in the X1 rocket aircraft, the VW120 did not need a mother plane to carry it to high altitude but took off on its own and landed on its own wheels. The authors trace the short life of John Derry to his tragic death at the age of only thirty.

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Gladiator Ace, Bill ‘Cherry’ Vale the RAF’s forgotten fighter ace

B1628

The author raises a very interesting question in the book title but does not directly address this question. How did the RAF manage to forget one of its highest scoring aces? The answer is probably that he flew obsolete and obsolescent aircraft in a theatre that saw a series of defeats. Bill Vale achieved many of his victories in the Gloster Gladiator biplane fighter that still equipped RAF and FAA squadrons on the outbreak of war in 1939.

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