Author Topic: What are we reading?  (Read 677140 times)

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Offline Toonces

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Re: What are we reading?
« Reply #5385 on: March 20, 2021, 11:55:07 PM »
For as much as I love flying biplanes, I really don't know anything at all, practically, about WW1 in any aspect...including the air war.

Can you recommend a good book on the WW1 air war?  I'm not entirely sure what I'm looking for...something that gives me the flavor of the air war, with a bit of context of course, focusing on the planes, pilots, and strategies. 
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Offline Tripoli

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Re: What are we reading?
« Reply #5386 on: March 21, 2021, 07:39:15 AM »
For as much as I love flying biplanes, I really don't know anything at all, practically, about WW1 in any aspect...including the air war.

Can you recommend a good book on the WW1 air war?  I'm not entirely sure what I'm looking for...something that gives me the flavor of the air war, with a bit of context of course, focusing on the planes, pilots, and strategies.

Toonces-here is a link to some WWI aviation books I have on my drive. https://we.tl/t-TkuaB3BrNr  They are no longer under copyright.  I believe they were originally posted by "RAF_Louvert" over at the WOFF forum in 2010, but I can't seem to find the post.  They include the following:

Biogrophies, Diaries, Personal Writings

“14,000 Miles Through the Air”, by Captain Ross Smith, c.1922

“Air Men O'War”, by Boyd Cable, c.1918

”Fighting the Flying Circus”, by Eddie Rickenbacker, c.1919

“Guynemer, The Ace of Aces”, by Jacques Mortane, c.1918

“Luck on the Wing”, by Major Elmer Haslett, c.1920

”The Flying Poilu”, by Marcel Nadaud, c.1918


References:

“Aircraft Mechanics Handbook”, c.1918

”How To Fly”, by A. Frederick Collins, c.1918

“Orders, Decorations, and Insignia”, by Colonel Robert E. Wyllie, c.1921

“The American Air Service”, by Arthur Sweetser, c.1919

“A Flying Fighter”, by E.M. Roberts, c.1918

”An Aviator’s Field Book”, the field notes of Oswald Bolcke, English Edition c.1917

”Flying For France”, by James R. McConnell, c.1917

”Heroes Of Aviation”, by Laurence La Tourette Driggs, c.1918

”Night Bombing With the Bedouins”, by Robert H. Reece, c.1919

“The Red Battle Flyer”, by Manfred von Richthofen, English Edition c.1918


References:

“Aircraft Of Today”, by Charles C. Turner, c.1917

“Information for Air Service Mechanics”, by The U.S. Air Service, c.1919

“Practical Flying”, by W.G. McMinnies, c.1918

”The Romance Of Aircraft”, by Laurence Smith, c.1919

Biogrophies, Diaries, Personal Writings

“Above The Battles”, by C.H.A. Andre, c.1919

”En l'air!”, by Bert Hall, c.1918

”Green Balls: The Adventures Of a Night-Bomber”, by Paul Bewsher, c.1919

“Letters of an American Airman”, by Captain Hamilton Coolidge, C.1919

“The Fledgling”, by Charles Bernhard Nordhoff, c.1919

“With the Flying Squadron”, by Flight Lieutenant Harold Rosher, c.1916


References:

“Military Aeroplanes” by Grover C. Loening, c.1917

“The Aero Manual”, c.1909

“The German Air Force in the Great War”, by Georg Paul Neumann, c.1920

“Wings of War”, by Theodore Macfarlane Knappen, c.1920


« Last Edit: March 21, 2021, 07:44:07 AM by Tripoli »
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Offline Gusington

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Re: What are we reading?
« Reply #5387 on: March 21, 2021, 09:08:32 AM »
Thank you ArizonaTank and Tripoli. WWI and WWI aviation are some of my favorite military history subjects.
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Offline Tripoli

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Re: What are we reading?
« Reply #5388 on: March 21, 2021, 09:39:27 AM »
Here's a download link to "The Lafayette Flying Corps" by Nordhoff and Hall  Both of the authors were members of the squadron, and Nordhoff is a fairly good writer, later writing "The Mutiny on the Bounty".  I'm also including links to "High Adventure" and "The Fledgling" by the same author.

Toonces-As an aviator yourself. you may find the book  “Practical Flying” by W.G. McMinnies, (in the collection I uploaded) interesting.  It is amazing how much, yet in some ways how little aviation has changed in 100 years.

https://archive.org/details/TheLafayetteFlyingCorpsvolume1

https://books.googleusercontent.com/books/content?req=AKW5QafTKWxP4pgjyjoryZ0wdj_b_38-5fphAaJvFsGnw_y9qCBkacc1sFe_B-gL0jZQ3obzQ29PefpaqoNoakNc1NuL3GyMW57n1cYoVOlImJb6QKz1jWXORIq5OwBMGLPCtMfCLQIZwJpR7GkrutCmD3LVTF78jlHN5io4cmNMEUd7lj1g643FOJ0kINPda2GGLlT01Kle0F0K_OBh_QvsrF59_gAVvXHH0OqVvRXSpYvYM9wmT4a3MJX4qXrP57YufhIEkv3RYgSEWmTmKc_U_QPCRTyYrw

https://books.googleusercontent.com/books/content?req=AKW5Qadfz73tOAJbaeIWqTEEcXC8vTKResGKiQydi3rf1Y6tUFkF_qpqw6fUCCP2Mv4kDXeXCElP7O2gXsYyqBnEGqCe3SUHIdP5ho-EH_mTJJCV208QCCL-87-dXmK2X5n2hPVpGC_tmozhgGqJch1jQfcNkkjfBvVcrx2lzC9b9nbaHjUITeexUhRYiGo88bE5biD7aitiSED7rGdVNdFDRtHhn_PXsKM1EcEetmyuNJ8-pKgNtkSshicH9m6TzZZls7zikoQ2


https://books.googleusercontent.com/books/content?req=AKW5QacxcYYmTRazK6CVj5TNxBwaqasQgUzreisUlY_ePUVBFH4mwT5dOhX-h-LfBDKXCjcYeQV9dE9ZjZr6eHj_8lhemNdM64HkZKIdtz2FIewBk4qLgT7AS9hW-tBQS3CLKRvdtM5jZ2EdemMm8Z0tMSk9cUCeze5NXlnlQCNjSd7ECgr5orfKZO5Ry_-Lbaskf14_enLt7SfdQgwvt89ZGotHWAFbUJ0rvPf-bVVK3LUXTBEsAO2lm4tCh-l05hxE6FpDlPJD
« Last Edit: March 21, 2021, 10:15:27 AM by Tripoli »
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Offline ArizonaTank

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Re: What are we reading?
« Reply #5389 on: March 21, 2021, 10:02:02 AM »
For as much as I love flying biplanes, I really don't know anything at all, practically, about WW1 in any aspect...including the air war.

Can you recommend a good book on the WW1 air war?  I'm not entirely sure what I'm looking for...something that gives me the flavor of the air war, with a bit of context of course, focusing on the planes, pilots, and strategies.

In addition to the great contemporary books that Tripoli points out, I recommend "Bloody April" by Peter Hart.

While it covers only a relatively short period of the war in the air (spring 1917), it is probably the most iconic period. The rise of von Richthofen and a brief period when German aircraft were superior to most of their Allied counterparts. The book is full of first hand accounts, as well as descriptions of the aircraft, strategies, and the men. 

If you have a Kindle account, you can get an electronic version of the book for the amazing price of $3.99.
« Last Edit: March 21, 2021, 03:37:26 PM by ArizonaTank »
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Offline al_infierno

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Re: What are we reading?
« Reply #5390 on: March 24, 2021, 07:53:43 PM »
I picked up Operation Barbarossa: the Complete Organisational and Statistical Analysis, and Military Simulation, Volume I by Nigel Askey.  A monumental tome of data about the Eastern Front for the fervent Ostdork in your life.   :P

Quote
In June 1941 the German Wehrmacht launched Operation Barbarossa: the attack on the USSR and the largest land invasion in recorded history. The titanic battles that followed led to the greatest loss of life ever experienced in a military campaign. Since the end of WWII there has been intense discourse about the key operational and strategic decisions made by the German and Soviet high commands on the East-Front, especially during the critical period from July to September 1941.

Operation Barbarossa: the Complete Organisational and Statistical Analysis, and Military Simulation focuses on 1941 - when the USSR came closest to defeat. It includes full analyses of the belligerents’ armed forces, weapons, equipment, personnel, transport, logistics, war-production, mobilisation and replacements. Uniquely, the work formalises a sophisticated military simulation methodology extending from the tactical to the strategic level, and applies this methodology to each of the belligerents. Volume I, the first of six volumes, is primarily concerned with the structure of this methodology, but uses many of the events and weapons from Operation Barbarossa as illustrative case studies. The complete work represents the most historically accurate, advanced and comprehensive quantitative analysis yet, of the 1941 campaign on the East-Front.

Operation Barbarossa: the Complete Organisational and Statistical Analysis, and Military Simulation is the culmination of over ten years of research and collation. It brings together an immense amount of information from many published and unpublished sources, and presents it with contextual history and analyses. The professional researcher or amateur scholar of WWII is provided with a comprehensive data source, containing the details of all the armed forces involved on the East-Front during 1941, as well as the relevant economic and logistical support. Currently no other single work provides a comparable reference of the actual Soviet and Axis land, air and naval forces involved in what was the most decisive and destructive campaign of WWII.

https://www.amazon.com/Operation-Barbarossa-Organisational-Statistical-Simulation-ebook/dp/B07859FQ1D/ref=sr_1_3?dchild=1&keywords=nigel+askey&qid=1616636939&sr=8-3
It makes no difference what men think of war, said the judge.  War endures.  As well ask men what they think of stone.  War was always here.  Before man was, war waited for him.  The ultimate trade awaiting its ultimate practitioner.  That is the way it was and will be.  That way and not some other way.
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If they made nothing but WWII games, I'd be perfectly content.  Hypothetical matchups from alternate history 1980s, asymmetrical US-bashes-some-3rd world guerillas, or minor wars between Upper Bumblescum and outer Kaboomistan hold no appeal for me.
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Offline Jarhead0331

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Re: What are we reading?
« Reply #5391 on: March 24, 2021, 08:16:46 PM »
How are the maps and charts in that?
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Offline al_infierno

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Re: What are we reading?
« Reply #5392 on: March 24, 2021, 08:46:16 PM »
I don't think there are any maps, since it's very data oriented and focuses on the TO&E and how to quantify things like weapon system effectiveness for simulation purpose.  There are 22 tables, graphs, and charts that are all meaty yet clean and easy to read.  I bought a Kindle version so unfortunately a couple graphs are super tiny to fit on the screen, but most of them are legible.  You don't save a huge amount of money going for the Kindle version over the hard copy, so it might be worth just springing the extra few bucks for the proper "flipping through a manual" experience.
It makes no difference what men think of war, said the judge.  War endures.  As well ask men what they think of stone.  War was always here.  Before man was, war waited for him.  The ultimate trade awaiting its ultimate practitioner.  That is the way it was and will be.  That way and not some other way.
- Cormac McCarthy, Blood Meridian


If they made nothing but WWII games, I'd be perfectly content.  Hypothetical matchups from alternate history 1980s, asymmetrical US-bashes-some-3rd world guerillas, or minor wars between Upper Bumblescum and outer Kaboomistan hold no appeal for me.
- Silent Disapproval Robot


I guess it's sort of nice that the word "tactical" seems to refer to some kind of seriousness during your moments of mental clarity.
- MengJiao

Offline Gusington

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Re: What are we reading?
« Reply #5393 on: March 27, 2021, 09:34:33 AM »
Just began The Winter King by Bernard Cornwell.
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Offline ArizonaTank

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Re: What are we reading?
« Reply #5394 on: March 27, 2021, 10:39:45 AM »
Just finishing "Japanese Destroyer Captain by Tameichi Hara.

https://www.amazon.com/Japanese-Destroyer-Captain-Guadalcanal-Battles/dp/1591143845/ref=sr_1_1?crid=1NJXT8O4YXJWB&dchild=1&keywords=japanese+destroyer+captain&qid=1616861305&s=books&sprefix=japanes+destroyer%2Caps%2C218&sr=1-1

This is one of the best WWII naval war books I have read...let alone that it is by a Japanese naval officer. The narrative flows well, and the descriptions of combat are detailed and easy to follow.

Hara was a destroyer captain through much of the war. He had a brief stint at the torpedo school, but he ended the war in charge of a light cruiser. Unlike some of the other post-war Axis memoirs, you know the old...'we could have beaten the Russians if you had only let us,' Hara is critical of his nation's pursuit of war. He does downplay atrocities, but does not deny them. He also calls the performance of his own admirals, and those of the Allied forces as he sees them. He has no problem criticizing or praising both the Allies and the Japanese forces. He also criticizes his own performance at times. 

One of the most striking lessons for me from the book was that the Americans beat the Japanese not just with greater numbers, but better technology. In 1942, the Japanese dominated night surface actions with their superior long lance torpedoes, and more coordinated maneuvers. But by late 1943, the Americans had superior radar fire control, that stripped the Japanese of all of these advantages. Hara describes seeing very accurate night fire take apart a Japanese cruiser with hardly any misses. 

One of the interesting things about the book is that Hara comes across as a guy you might want to have a beer with, rather than a stoic 'samurai.' He describes many of his relationships with fellow officers and men in human, rather than professional terms. For example, he agonized over having to ask his students at the torpedo school if any of them wanted to volunteer for Kamikaze torpedo boat units...Hara thought it was a terrible waste. This makes the overall book compelling to read.

For anyone interested in WWII naval combat, I think Hara's book is a must read.
« Last Edit: March 27, 2021, 10:42:24 AM by ArizonaTank »
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Offline Tripoli

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Re: What are we reading?
« Reply #5395 on: March 27, 2021, 11:08:39 AM »
Just finishing "Japanese Destroyer Captain by Tameichi Hara.

https://www.amazon.com/Japanese-Destroyer-Captain-Guadalcanal-Battles/dp/1591143845/ref=sr_1_1?crid=1NJXT8O4YXJWB&dchild=1&keywords=japanese+destroyer+captain&qid=1616861305&s=books&sprefix=japanes+destroyer%2Caps%2C218&sr=1-1

This is one of the best WWII naval war books I have read...let alone that it is by a Japanese naval officer. The narrative flows well, and the descriptions of combat are detailed and easy to follow.

Hara's book is a must read, if you are interested in WWII Pacific.  I've have it on my bookshelf since 1972, when my 4th grade teacher gave me it to read (yes, I was a very strange child, but that is a different story  ;D)  To give you an idea of how good it is, I believe it was originally published by Bantam Books in the late 1950's.  When they stopped publishing it in the 1990s, it was picked up by the Naval Institute Press, a publishing house that caters to the professional military audience.    For those who haven't read it, you should if you have an interest in the WWII Pacific theater.  Here is a recent review: https://inverarity.livejournal.com/273654.html

Edit: Apparently, it was Ballantine Books that originally published it in 1961.  There is a National Defense University  Review of the book here: https://web.archive.org/web/20110716120630/http://www.jfsc.ndu.edu/college_resources/JOR/recall_roster.pdf
« Last Edit: March 27, 2021, 11:28:33 AM by Tripoli »
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Offline solops

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Re: What are we reading?
« Reply #5396 on: March 27, 2021, 12:03:23 PM »
+1
I have had Hara's book since college in the 70s and have read it many times. I recall thinking how it changed the way I thought of every other WW2 Pacific book I have read before or after.
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Offline Sir Slash

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Re: What are we reading?
« Reply #5397 on: April 01, 2021, 09:38:39 AM »
The first 2 books of a 4 book series about the ACW by Jeffery Wm Hunt, " Meade and Lee After Gettysburg" and "Meade and Lee at Bristoe Station". Should be good.
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Offline nelmsm

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Re: What are we reading?
« Reply #5398 on: April 01, 2021, 03:35:02 PM »
The first 2 books of a 4 book series about the ACW by Jeffery Wm Hunt, " Meade and Lee After Gettysburg" and "Meade and Lee at Bristoe Station". Should be good.

Thanks for mentioning these.  I hadn't heard of them before but they are now on my ever growing Kindle wishlist.

Offline Sir Slash

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Re: What are we reading?
« Reply #5399 on: April 01, 2021, 09:01:22 PM »
The third book in the series, I can't remember the title, just came-out recently.
"Take a look at that". Sgt. Wilkerson-- CMBN. His last words after spotting a German tank on the other side of a hedgerow.