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  • #70094
    Whirlwind
    Participant

    What in your opinion are the best books about air warfare?  Are there any equivalents to Biddle’s Military Power https://www.amazon.co.uk/Military-Power-Explaining-Victory-Defeat/dp/0691128022/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1503163574&sr=8-1&keywords=stephen+biddle or Storr’s Human Face of War https://www.amazon.co.uk/Human-Face-War-Birmingham-Studies-ebook/dp/B00LUUA65S/ref=sr_1_3?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1503163640&sr=1-3&keywords=jim+storr?

    • This topic was modified 3 years, 10 months ago by Whirlwind.
    • This topic was modified 3 years, 10 months ago by Whirlwind.

    https://hereticalgaming.blogspot.co.uk/

    #70097
    Don Glewwe
    Participant

    I value Peter Hart’s WW1 trilogy (Somme Success, Bloody April, Aces Falling) for the inclusion of so many personal/contemporary accounts.

    For the same reason, any autobiographical book -read with the proper filter of the time/place of its composition- means more to me than the best scholarly assessment of a certain period.

    The tech aspects are there for the having (though limited/nonexistent for 100 years ago) but it is the personal narratives that mean the most – especially for any game that purports to represent ‘what it was like’ in the cockpit at the time (whatever that time may be).

     

    My caveat to all those memoirs/recollections/recreations (recently shown on cable TV) is that the description of a violent, chaotic event may very well detail the physical actions of the participating aircraft – but often do little to detail the mental, decision-making actions of the pilots themselves.

    My question is: Whose behavior -the aircraft’s or the pilot’s- are the rules trying to represent?   They’re not the same.

     

    So, to the OP: Books that highlight/show what a pilot was thinking/feeling in combat are the most valuable, not those that detail an aircraft’s stats.

    https://brawlfactory.net/

    #70107
    Jim Jackaman
    Participant

    Blimey. That’s a tricky one.

    I suspect you’ll get a whole range of options but I like anything by Edward H.Sims, especially Greatest Fighter Aces.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Edward_H._Sims

    For wargaming purposes, his books are excellent as they include detailed diagrams of specific air to air dogfights alongside explanations based on first hand interviews with the pilots themselves.

    • This reply was modified 3 years, 10 months ago by Jim Jackaman.
    #70109
    John D Salt
    Participant

    Blimey. That’s a tricky one.

    I suspect you’ll get a whole range of options but I like anything by Edward H.Sims, especially Greatest Fighter Aces.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Edward_H._Sims

    For wargaming purposes, his books are excellent as they include detailed diagrams of specific air to air dogfights alongside explanations based on first hand interviews with the pilots themselves.

    Excellent recommendation.

    I’d also recommend anything by Alfred Price. Air warfare is a big subject, but his “Instruments of Darkness” was for a long time the best general introduction to electronic warfare, and probably still is the best on the topic in WW2; “Aircraft versus submarines” has I think not been surpassed on WW2 airborne ASW; and his “Fighter Aircraft” and “Bomber Aircraft” are two books that each contain more useful material on the essential questions of WW2 aircraft design than anything else I have met, even though they are quite tiny books.

    I have never yet met anything that really explains the problem of how to exercise voice control of an airborne fighter squadron or wing; there’s a snippet from “Screwball” Buerling in “Fighter Aircraft”, but little else. Dizzy Allen’s “Who won the Battle of Britain?” is a superb primer on fighter squadron formations and armament, and if its tone is opinionated than I think it’s because the author has some very sound opinions.

    Finally, Harris’ “Bomber Offensive” is essential for the big picture on the RAF’s strategic bombing campaign — although, again, opinionated in tone.

    All the best,

    John.

    #70110
    madman
    Participant

    What are you looking for?

    Technology, general or specific planes/weapons/power plants/aerodynamics?

    History, units, pilots, planes, designers, campaigns, battles, periods?

    Tactics, overviews, specific weapons, ACM?

    Fiction, which war?

    As stated above it is a big subject. What aspect are you looking for?

    Personal favorites.

    Fiction: The Bandy series by Donald Jacks.
    Technology: Windsock Datafiles
    History: Anything by Peter Kilduff
    Tactics: Fighter Combat tactics and maneuvering, Robert L. Shaw, Naval Institute Press (priceless)

    #70117
    Don Glewwe
    Participant

    …I like anything by Edward H.Sims, especially Greatest Fighter Aces. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Edward_H._Sims …

    Excellent recommendation.

    Agreed.  Thanks for that, Jim.  It’s always nice to learn about something.

    It may be a niche, but us junior spelunkers really enjoy coming upon a rich vein, even if the old hands have dismissed it as old news.

    https://brawlfactory.net/

    #70168
    Jim Jackaman
    Participant

    Oh, and anything at all by Brian Cull, if you want to have lots and lots of detail for scenario writing:

    https://www.amazon.co.uk/Brian-Cull/e/B001K7LD7G

    The ‘Wings over…’ books are particularly good, with a specific theme and lots of photos, operational details, first hand accounts etc.

    #70614
    RogerBW
    Participant

    Down at the excessively detailed end, Shaw’s Fighter Combat: Tactics and Manoeuvering is pretty solid.

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