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Subject: Books that you can read to enhance your game play... rss

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Jim P
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OK, In another thread ( Re: Successive attacks ) it was asked by feldmafx what books one could recommend on the subject of the air war over Europe. So below is a list of books I have with a few at the end that I am planning to get from Osprey Publishing. The Books are listed in rough order of preference.

My list of books:

Masters of the Air: America's Bomber Boys Who Fought the Air War Against Nazi Germany
by Donald L. Miller
Publisher: Simon & Schuster 2007
(Great book on the history of the 8th USAAF bomber operations. Lots of first hand accounts with a chapter dedicated to the 100th BG. This is one of my favorite books on the subject. A Must Read)

Black Thursday
by Martin Cainin
Publisher: E.P. Dutton 1960, then Bantam War Books 1981 & 1987
(This book is a vivid account of the first deep penetration mission to Schweinfurt and Regensburg. This is a captivating read on the struggle these brave men endured on that fateful day in history. Must read)

Half a Wing, Three Engines and a Prayer
by Brian D. O'Neill
Publisher: McGraw-Hill Professional; 1999

The Mighty Eighth: The Air War in Europe as Told by the Men Who Fought It
by Gerald Astor
Publisher: Dell; 1998
(For many years this book was the must read standard on the subject. And it still is a good read on the subject. It has been quite a while since I read this one, but I know it caught my interest in the big bombers. This is a Should Read)

The Mighty Eighth: A History of the U.S. 8th Army Air Force
by Roger A. Freeman
Publisher: Doubleday; June 1970

The Mighty Eighth: War Manual
by Roger A. Freeman
Publisher: Cassell; Corr. 2002

The Mighty Eighth: War Diary
by Roger A. Freeman
Publisher: Motorbooks Intl 1990

Luftwaffe Viermot Aces 1942-45 (ACE101) [19th September 2012]
by Robert Forsyth
Publisher: Osprey Publishing
(Pending a read)

High Noon over Haseluenne: The 100th BG over Berlin - March 6, 1944
by Luc Dewez & Michael P. Faley
Publisher: Schiffer Military History; 2009
Received for CHRISTmas 2011. This is one book I have wanted since it came out. (Pending a read)

The B-17 Flying Fortress Story
by Roger Anthony Freeman
Publisher: Arms & Armour Press 2000

Tail-End Charlie’s: The Last Battles of the Bomber War, 1944-45
by John Nichol
Publisher: St. Martin's Griffin; 2008
(My brother lent me this book and it is another Great read. As the title infers it is about the tail-end bomber, squadron and groups in anyone sortie. This book has many stories from those who were there. The book covers both the 8th USAAF and Bomber Command operations. This side-by-side comparison alone makes this book a must read. Yet, this book is solid read on the subject and an easy read. This is a Should Read.)

Dresden: Tuesday, February 13, 1945 (Paperback)
by Frederick Taylor
Publisher: Harper Perennial 2005
(A harrowing account of the devastating mission that ruined the career of the bomber command head for bombing one of Europe’s crown jewel cities. Thought of as a mission with no military value, Dresden presents information and a new view as to why this mission had to be flown. The author does not take a firm position, but lets the reader come to his or her own conclusion. A great read, but it will tug at your soul with the abundant first hand accounts from those who flew the mission and many of those who lived through the horror of a firebombing. I was taken aback by the planning put into this type of mission. Pick this one up, it’s a Must Read.)

Combat Crew: The Story of 25 Combat Missions Over Europe From the Daily Journal of a B-17 Gunner
by: John Comer
Publisher: Pocket December 1, 1989 (Paper Back & eBook)
The nice thing about these eBooks is that you can read the first chapter to get the feel for the book. Found this book and the writers style captivating so I bought the eBook for $4.99. I am now about 33% completed and it is a good read with many new aspects of the Bomber crews life reveled. (Full review pending completion)

Rocket Fighter
by Mano Ziegler
Publisher: Motor Press (German) 1961, then Bantam War Books 1984 & 1989
(The valiant history, in a novel writing style, about the fleeting Luftwaffe pilots that fought their machine as much as any U.S. Bomber guns or fighter jockey. Interesting read on the development of this unique aircraft developed to stem the onslaught of Allied bombers over Germany. Should read)

The Incredible 305th: the "Can Do" Bombers of World War II
by Wilbur H. Morrison
Publisher: Duell Slone & Pearce 1962, then Jove 1984 & 1987
(A captivating account of one of the foremost bombardment groups of World War Two. Lots of first hand stories that will keep you from putting the book down. Must read)

Flying Fortress: the illustrated Biography of the B-17 and the Men Who Flew Them
by Edward Jablonski
Publisher: Doubleday; 1965

Target Berlin: Mission 250: 6 March 1944
by Jeffrey L. Ethell & Alfred Price
Publisher: Greenhill Books; 2002

Fortress Against the Sun (Pacific Theater from the beginning)
by Gene E. Salecher
Publisher: Da Capo Press; 2001

Jimmy Stewart Bomber Pilot (B-24 Pilot)
by Starr Smith (B-24)
Publisher: Zenith Press; 2006

Bomber Command (RAF)
by Max Hastings
Publisher: Pan Books 1999

The Blond Knight of Germany (Erich Hartmann bio)
by Raymond Toliver & Trevor Constable
Publisher: McGraw-Hill Professional; 1986

Pathfinder Pioneer: The Memoir of a Lead Piolt in World War II
By Colonel Raymond E. Brim USAF (Ret.)
Publisher: Case Mate
(Pending a read)



My list of Osprey Books;

Aviation Elite Units Series

4th Fighter Group - Debden Eagles

303rd Bombardment Group

Luftwaffe Sturmgruppen

Combat Aircraft Series

B-17 Flying Fortress Units of the Eighth Air Force (part 1)

B-17 Flying Fortress Units of the Eighth Air Force (part 2)

B-17 Flying Fortress Units of the Pacific War

B-17 Flying Fortress Units of the MTO

Lancaster Squadrons 1942-43

Lancaster Squadrons 1944-45

B-24 Liberator Units of the Eighth Air Force

B-24 Liberator Units of the Fifteenth Air Force

B-24 Liberator Units of the Pacific War

Aircraft of the Aces Series

Luftwaffe Viermot Aces 1942-45 (ACE101)

Fw 190 Defense of the Reich Aces (ACE92)

Bf 109 Defense of the Reich Aces (ACE68)

Campaign Series

Pointblank

Duel Series

FW 190 Sturmbocke VS B-17 Flying Fortress [DUE24] by Robert Forsyth
Published: November 2009
I just picked this one up yesterday (26-March-10) and have only had time to do a quick scan of its contents. From first look it is a good resource for information on the time period. . (Pending a read)


Just Acquired:
Luftwaffe Over Germany: Defense of the Reich
By Donald Caldwell
Publisher: Frontline Books



-- AND --

Day Fighters in Defense of the Reich: A War Diary, 1942–45
By Donald Caldwell
Publisher: Frontline Books




Osprey Books I want:

Aviation Elite Units Series

332nd Fighter Group; Tuskegee Airmen

56th Fighter Group

Combat Aircraft Series
None at this time

Aircraft of the Aces Series

Bf 109 F/G/K Aces of the Western Front

Messerschmitt Bf 110 Zerstörer Aces of World War 2

P-38 Lightning Aces of the ETO/MTO

German Jet Aces of World War 2

Focke-Wulf Fw 190 Aces of the Western Front

Mustang Aces of the Eighth Air Force


Enjoy your reading!

If anyone has more books to add PLEASE DO!!!

Jim P cool

= Newly acquired book.

1st & 4th Edited for clarity.
2nd Edit to add comments.
3rd, 5th, 6th & 9th Edit added content.
7th & 8th Spelling fix.
10th & 11th added books, moved three book to have list.
12th added the book Combat Crew
13th added Osprey Viermot book
14th moved Osprey 4th Fighter Group - Debden Eagles to have list
15th added book - Pathfinder Pioneer
16th added Books - Luftwaffe Over Germany: Defense of the Reich & Day Fighters in Defense of the Reich: A War Diary, 1942–45


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C'mon! You can't just throw a list like that out there without designating a favorite or two of the bunch? Or a short list of the ones you really are taken with. Thanks for the list.

Craig
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Or is that what Osprey's mean?
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Team Ski
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You missed Serenade to the Big Bird and Flying Forts.


-Ski
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Jim P
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craig104 wrote:
C'mon! You can't just throw a list like that out there without designating a favorite or two of the bunch? Or a short list of the ones you really are taken with. Thanks for the list.

Craig


Sorry about that Craig! It was getting time to go watch the Olympics and I was tired of writing. I have planned to write a brief thought on each book I have read. But that is up and coming. Though if you re-read my opening comment i did say "The Books are listed in rough order of preference." But I will post more on these books in the next few days.

Thank you for your comments,
Jim Pcool

PS: Osprey is a military book publisher: http://www.ospreypublishing.com/
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Teamski wrote:
You missed Serenade to the Big Bird and Flying Forts.


-Ski


Oh Man.... I was going to say Serenade to the Big Bird. (Good book by the way!)

I also have The Man Who Flew the Memphis Belle (Signed by Robt. Morgan) but I have not read this yet... so many books... so little timeshake


Link to the site

http://www.memphis-belle.com/ Site has a link to the book. OR here direct:

http://www.memphis-belle.com/catalog/61.html

Forgot to mention, I also read this from your list and I liked it:

Half a Wing, Three Engines and a Prayer by Brian D. O'Neill

Jim

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Fall Of Fortresses, by Elmer Bendiner.


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Another great book that highlights some of the heroes who flew in the B-17s is The Bomber Boys by Travis L. Ayres. I'm half-way through Half a Wing, Three Engines and a Prayer.

Edited for spelling mistake.
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I also have the Jablonski book listed above; it was a lucky find in a used bookstore in a little northern Ontario town a couple of years ago.

The interesting part of this book for me was the picture of bombed-out Shizuoka City in Japan (page 278). I called Shizuoka home for nearly 14 years, and the topography in the photo is instantly recognizable. Of course, the buildings aren't as flat now as in the picture.

My recommendation for the genre would be The Last Enemy by Richard Hillary. He was a fighter pilot during the battle of Britain, and the book is autobiographical. It was a great read, even moreso because I picked it up in a "free to a good home" box at the doctor's office.
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Jim P
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aaxiom wrote:
You could add The Wild Blue by Ambrose...


Oh man I forgot about this one. I have this book but have yet to read it. I'm glad to here it is a good book. I may move it up on the list of books to read.


Jim P cool
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Jim P
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I found a few more books I had forgotten about. These books are worth a read, but may be hard to find due to age.

Black Thursday by Martian Cainin
Publisher: E.P. Dutton 1960, then Bantam War Books 1981 & 1987
This book is a vivid account of the first deep penetration mission to Schweinfurt and Regensburg. This is a captivating read on the struggle these brave men endured on that fateful day in history. (Must read)

Rocket Fighter by Mano Ziegler
Publisher: Motor Press (German) 1961, then Bantam War Books 1984 & 1989
The valiant history, in a novel writing style, about the fleeting Luftwaffe pilots that fought their machine as much as any U.S. Bomber guns or fighter jockey. Interesting read on the development of this unique aircraft developed to stem the onslaught of Allied bombers over Germany. (Should read)

The Incredible 305th : the "Can Do" Bombers of World War II by Wilbur H. Morrison
Publisher: Duell Slone & Pearce 1962, then Jove 1984 & 1987
A captivating account of one of the foremost bombardment groups of World War Two. Lots of first hand stories that will keep you from putting the book down. (Must read)

Enjoy!
Jim P cool

PS These are added to the top list for convenience of a single list.
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My very small collection of books on the matter:
B-17 Flying Fortresses of the Eight Air Force / Martin Bowman - Aircraft of the Aces: Men & Legends (Osprey)
B-17 Flying Fortress Units of the MTO / William N Hess - Osprey Combat Aircraft 38
Messerschmitt Bf109 / Edward Shacklady - Classic WWII Aviation
Messerschmitt Bf110 Zerstörer Aces of World War 2 / John Weal - Osprey Combat Aircraft 25
Lightning Strikes: The Story of a B-17 Bomber / Andy Hartles - Fortunes of War
The "Flypast" Book of the B-17 Flying Fortress / Robert Rudhall

Got to find a book about FW190!!!
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Jim P
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When perusing Osprey web site I noticed two books of interest. The first is from their Duel series titled "FW 190 Sturmbocke VS B-17 Flying Fortress: Europe 1944-45 by Robert Forsyth". The second is from their Aircraft of the Aces series titled “Fw 190 Defence of the Reich Aces” by John Weal.

FW 190 Sturmbocke VS B-17 Flying Fortress [DUE24] by Robert Forsyth
Publisher: Osprey Publishing November 2009
I just picked this one up yesterday (26-March-10) and have only had time to do a quick scan of its contents. From first look it is a good resource for information on the time period. . (Pending a read)

Fw 190 Defence of the Reich Aces [ACE??] by John Weal
Publisher: Osprey Publishing December 2010
Can’t wait for this one since I already have the Me 109 version of this series. Osprey’s Me 109 book is a very good read. (Pending a read)

Enjoy!
Jim P cool

PS These are added to the top list for convenience of a single list.
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René Christensen
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I just recieved "Lightning Strikes" and the FLYPAST book of B-17 (man, that's a big magazine!!!) Both items for less than £10.00 incl. postage - not bad!!!
Wonder if I get time to fly my 2nd mission today!
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Jim P
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Slotracer wrote:
Wonder if I get time to fly my 2nd mission today!


Step away from the books and start rolling your dice!! Then start writing your AAR!!

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YES, Sir!
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OK! Now that the mission is in, how are those books???
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I just started reading the 'Lightning Strikes' book, SIR!
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Very interesting book, this 'Lightning Strikes'!!!
I'm halfway now. (I only read why I travel by train to work and home again (approx. 20 minutes each way - I'm not a fast reader!)
Surprised me that the crews something were shuffled around and didn't even fly the same plane all the time.
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I just secured a copy of B-17 on eBay. Thanks for the book list!
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Jim P
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Hex_Enduction_Hour wrote:
I just secured a copy of B-17 on eBay. Thanks for the book list!


You are welcome. I need to take a minute to add some updates.
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Thanks to my beautiful wife, she picked up a book I have been wanting for a while now. I saw this one about a year or so ago and knew it was a must get.

So here is what Mrs Clause got me:
High Noon Over Haseluenne: the 100th BG over Berlin - March 6, 1944

This is a focus piece that goes well with the book;
Target Berlin: Mission 250: 6 March 1944
by Jeffrey L. Ethell & Alfred Price
Publisher: Greenhill Books; 2002

I have one book going now that when finished I will start this one. Review will come after it is read. Yes both books!

First look is good. Lots of first hand accounts and many many charts on formation compositions and wing layout during the mission. Thought some look to be repeated many times through the book. This could be good or redundant. I'll let you know. But from a quick skim or two.... OK I have been through it three times. I have picked up some enlightening data.

I have updated the above list since last time, adding this book and two others. Osprey's FW190 defense of the Reich and Pointblank. Also I moved the three Osprey B-24 books to the Have list as those were my Birthday gift earlier this fall. I have the Best wife!

Enjoy!
Jim P cool
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I just about bought the Osprey book on Operation Pointblank; it looked fairly informational and certainly would've been an interesting read. Unfortunately, the Complete McAuslan was calling to me from the fiction section so it's been relegated to my wishlist.
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Jim P
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On my trip to Washington DC I was re-reading one of my old books on Schweinfurt when the guy sitting next to me suggested I download a book on my phone with the Kindle app. So I looked for a prospect and found the following book.

Combat Crew: The Story of 25 Combat Missions Over Europe From the Daily Journal of a B-17 Gunner by: John Comer

The nice thing about these eBooks is that you can read the first chapter to get the feel for the book. Found this book and the writers style captivating so I bought the eBook for $4.99. I am now about 33% completed and it is a good read with many new aspects of the Bomber crews life reveled. (Full review pending completion)

Enjoy!
Jim P cool

PS These are added to the top list for convenience of a single list.

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Just picked up a copy of The Wrong Stuff by Truman Smith. Looks interesting.
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