Early Jet Bombers, 1944-1954...
...from Pen & Sword
Title: Early Jet Bombers 1944-1954
Author: Leo Marriott
Publisher: Pen & Sword
This is a fine companion to the author's earlier book in this series covering the Early Jet Fighters. This time he turns his attentions to the bombers, many of these early designs benefitting from German wartime research. Large bombers are generally gone from use in use by major air forces these days, though just a few exceptions, such as the B-52.
The book starts off with a helpful Introduction that sets the scene rather neatly, and then the rest is split across 5 chapters, covering Germany (and her late war designs), Great Britain, France, the United States and finally the Soviet Union. Each one has a short section of text to give the details of what was developed in each country, and then illustrated with an excellent collection of archive images which also feature extensive, and informative captions. Some of the aircraft are well known, including the German late war Arado 234, the British Canberra and V-Bombers, French Vautour, American B-47 and B-52, along with the Soviet Il-28 Beagle and Tu-16 Badger. On top of these though there are a lot of other designs and experimental machines which I for one had not seen before in many cases. Examples include the Short Sperrin with an unusual engine configuration, the French Nord 1071, American Douglas XB-42 and a test Martin Marauder with a Tandem Undercarriage, and the Soviet Ilyushin Il-22.
These days, smaller, multi-role combat aircraft with much more powerful engines can carry and deliver heavy bomb loads with precision accuracy. All the same, there is a fascination about some of these post-war designs, some still beautiful, like the Vulcan, and others less so but all interesting to see for anyone interested in aviation development.
Thanks to Pen and Sword for this review copy.