Pen & Sword's Great War Fighter Aces 1916-1918

Author/Artists: Norman Franks


Pen & Sword


$24.95 from Casemate


Scott Van Aken

Notes: 124 pages, softcover
ISBN: 978-1-47386-126-8

This the second volume on the subject of Great War Fighter Aces. I somehow missed the first. However, I have read several other books in this series and pretty much like how these are done. These are mostly photo books, but, as in this case, are divided into distinct sections. For this volume, those sections are by date so that allows not only some historical background to be provided, but also to allow some of the more long lived pilots to be shown at various parts of their career.

One thing about the air war is that it was fought a bit differently depending on what side of the trench you happened to originate. For the Germans, it was mostly a defensive stance and rarely did they venture over British, French, or later, American lines. Not so the Entente. This is not to say that the Germans did not fly aggressively, as they surely did, but aside from their bombers and zeppelins, they usually did not attack behind enemy lines. They limited themselves to handling what came at them and in supporting the army.

The book does not deal with either the Italians nor the Russians, which is a bit odd as they both fought the Germans/Austro-Hungarians and they also had aces. Perhaps a future volume will deal with this as it could be they thought it would be too much to try to cram into 124 pages. The author did pick from a very nice selection of period images to illustrate both the pilots and planes. I also appreciate that he did not try to sepia tone the photos. I've read other books where this is done and it does nothing for the book. The historical sections were well written and the captions informative, which is really all you can ask. It is a great book and one that those who want to know more about these men will find a delight.

May 2017

Copyright All rights reserved.

Review book courtesy of  Casemate Publishing, where you can order your copy at this link

If you would like your product reviewed fairly and fairly quickly, please contact me or see other details in the Note to Contributors.