Strike from the Sea


US Navy Strike Aircraft from the Skyraider to the Super Hornet 1948 to the Present


Tommy Thomason


Specialty Press


$44.95 from Specialty Press


Scott Van Aken

Notes: ISBN 978-1-58007-132-1, 228 pages, 375 images

Once again, we can count on Specialty Press to offer us the best book on a subject and this time it is on US Navy Strike aircraft. Author Tommy Thomason is highly regarded as one who does the research needed to provide us with the most accurate and informative of books. His latest is especially interesting as it looks at the role of the attack aircraft from the WWII era AD-1 Skyraider until the current crop of jets and what is on the horizon.

Of course, the book starts back in WWII where the dedicated strike aircraft (as opposed to bomber or fighter-bomber) got its roots. It could easily be claimed that the Helldiver or the Avenger or the Corsair were early attack planes, as they provided sterling service assisting ground troops and dropping bombs, but this book concentrates on those that eventually got the 'A' for Attack designation as well as many wanna-bes for various contracts. That is why the Skyraider, Mauler and others vying for that contract are the initial offerings. It moves on to the A-2 Savage, A-3 Skywarrior, A-4 Skyhawk, A-5 Vigilante, A-6 Intruder and the last Navy aircraft to hold the 'A' for Attack, the A-7 Corsair II. Each aircraft is covered in full from the initial proposition, through the prototypes and on to fleet ops and retirement. It includes those aircraft also seeking the contract.

But the story does not stop there. The F/A-18 is also included in here as is the Bombcat variant of the F-14 and the current multi-mission plane, the F-18E Super Hornet. On the horizon is the F-35 (whatever happened to the F-24 through 34, anyway?) and what many think will be the future of attack aircraft, the UCAV or unmanned combat air vehicle.

All of this is provided with a super selection of photos and illustrations from a variety of sources, making it another outstanding Specialty Press presentation. It is a book that I can easily recommend to you and I know that once you start to read it, you will agree.

August 2009

Review book courtesy of , where you can order your copy of this and many other superb aviation and modeling books. Visit their website at the link above or call them at 1-800-895-4585

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