TankCraft 12, Tank Destroyer Achilles & M10..
...British Army Anti-Tank Units Western Europe 1944-45, from Pen and Sword
Title: TankCraft 12, Tank Destroyer Achilles and M10
Author: Dennis Oliver
Publisher: Pen and Sword Books
A new addition to the TankCraft series of books, number 12 in the series and another from author Dennis Oliver. It follows the basic format of these TankCraft books and provides lots of good reference information for both armour historians and modellers alike. After the background given in the Introduction we get into the battlefield of NW Europe which are covered in the story of the Achilles & M10 during the last year of WW2. This gives us the significant clashes they were involved in and a timeline of key points as well. That leads into consideration of the Anti-Tank Regiments of the British Army at the time. Notes on how developed during the war and then notes on each individual regiment, plus example unit organisation charts which take us up to page 16 before it takes a break. Then pages 17 through to 25 presents a series of first class colour profiles that will give plenty of ideas to modellers, and includes a page with detailed colour illustrations of the unit and Arm of Service signs that were used.
Next, pages 26 to 39 is a Model Showcase with 4 excellent models, from different modellers, and slightly unusual because while one uses a 1/35 kit from Italeri, the other 3 are all 1/48 models, using the Tamiya kit. An associated section on Model Products for both the M10 and the Achilles is comprehensively done, covering models in various scales from different manufacturers, plus a wide selection of accessory and detailing sets which can also be found. Pages 50 to 56 return to the details of the individual regiments and then a few pages on Aspects of the British Army. The final pages, 60 through to 63 considers Technical Details and Modifications, as there were many to the basic Sherman chassis which give a lot of variations. Just one minor printing error that seems to have crept in, as the captions for a middle row of detailed images of road wheels seems to have a repeat of the caption for the different track styles that were used. That is a minor slip though and doesn't detract from another excellent book.
One final thing to mention is the fine selection of archive images which are included throughout the book, and one in particular which shows an Achilles operating with both tracks put on back to front (it is on P.53). For many modellers you might think that an error by the modeller but useful to see evidence of it being done in real life if you need to prove it.
Thanks to Pen and Sword for this review copy.