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Books by Mark Lardas

  • Japan 1944-45

    Mark Lardas

    Product Code: BULFI
    Paperback
    The air campaign that incinerated Japan's cities was the first and only time that independent air power has won a war. As the United States pushed Imperial Japan back towards Tokyo Bay, the US Army Air Force deployed the first of a new bomber to the theater. The B-29 Superfortress was complex, troubled, and hugely advanced. It was the most expensive weapons system of the war, and formidably capable. But at the time, no strategic bombing campaign had ever brought about a nation's surrender. Not only that, but Japan was half a world away, and the US had no airfields even within the extraordinary range of the B-29. This analysis explains why the B-29s struggled at first, and how General LeMay devised radical and devastating tactics that began to systematically incinerate Japanese cities and industries and eliminate its maritime trade with aerial mining. It explains how and why this campaign was so uniquely successful, and how gaps in Japan's defences contributed to the B-29s' success.
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  • South American Battleships 1908-59

    Mark Lardas

    Product Code: BTMZG
    Paperback
    In 1908 the most incredible naval arms race in history began. Flush with cash from rubber and coffee, Brazil decided to order three of the latest, greatest category of warship available - the dreadnought battleship. One Brazilian dreadnought by itself could defeat the combined gunnery of every other warship of all the other South American nations. Brazil's decision triggered its neighbour Argentina to order its own brace of dreadnoughts, which in turn forced Chile (which had fought boundary disputes with Argentina) to order some. In the process, the South American dreadnought mania drove the three participants nearly into insolvency, led to the bankruptcy of a major shipyard, and triggered a chain of events which led Turkey to declare war on Great Britain. It also produced several groundbreaking dreadnought designs and one of the world's first aircraft carriers.
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  • Tsushima 1905

    Mark Lardas

    Product Code: BSZJI
    Paperback
    Japan was closed to the world until 1854 and its technology then was literally medieval. Great Britain, France and Russia divided the globe in the nineteenth century, but Japan was catching up. Its army and navy were retrained by Western powers and equipped with the latest weapons and ships. Japan wanted to further emulate its European mentors and establish a protectorate over Korea, yet Japanese efforts were blocked by Imperial Russia who had their own designs on the peninsula. The Russo-Japanese War started with a surprise Japanese naval attack against an anchored enemy fleet still believing itself at peace. It ended with the Battle of Tsushima, the most decisive surface naval battle of the 20th century. This gripping study describes this pivotal battle, and shows how the Japanese victory over Russia led to the development of the dreadnought battleship, and gave rise to an almost mythical belief in Japanese naval invincibility.
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  • US Flush-Deck Destroyers 1916-45

    Mark Lardas

    Product Code: BPZKE
    Paperback
    Four pipes and flush decks - these ships were a distinctively American destroyer design. Devised immediately prior to and during the United States' involvement in World War I they dominated the US Navy's destroyer forces all the way through to World War II. They were deployed on North Atlantic and Norwegian Sea convoys, and virtually everywhere in the Pacific, from Alaska to Australia. Fifty were given to Great Britain in its hour of need in 1940, and many would serve in other navies, fighting under the Soviet, Canadian, Norwegian, and even the Imperial Japanese flags. They also served in a variety of roles becoming seaplane tenders, high-speed transports, minesweepers and minelayers. One was even used as a self-propelled mine during Operation Chariot, destroying the dry dock at St. Nazaire. Fully illustrated throughout with commissioned artwork and contemporary photographs, this volume reveals the operational history of these US Navy ships that fought with distinction in both World Wars.
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  • Rabaul 1943-44

    Mark Lardas

    Product Code: BLZNL
    Paperback
    In 1942, the massive Japanese naval base and airfield at Rabaul was a fortress standing in the Allies' path to Tokyo. It was impossible to seize Rabaul, or starve the 100,000-strong garrison out. Instead the US began an innovative, hard-fought two-year air campaign to draw its teeth, and allow them to bypass the island completely. The struggle decided more than the fate of Rabaul. If successful, the Allies would demonstrate a new form of warfare, where air power, with a judicious use of naval and land forces, would eliminate the need to occupy a ground objective in order to control it. As it turned out, the Siege of Rabaul proved to be more just than a successful demonstration of air power - it provided the roadmap for the rest of World War II in the Pacific.
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  • USS Lawrence vs HMS Detroit

    Mark Lardas

    Product Code: BBCBK
    Paperback
    The most critical naval fighting during the War of 1812 took place, not on the high seas, but on the inland lakes of North America: the Great Lakes and Lake Champlain. Carrying between 12 and 22 cannon, the British and American sloops-of-war were ship-rigged, brig-rigged or schooner-rigged vessels. Lakes actions often involved two ships facing each other broadside to broadside, the best example of which was the battle of Lake Erie in 1813 where HMS Detroit led a Royal Navy squadron against the USS Lawrence-led US Navy. Featuring full-colour artwork, this lively study investigates the prolonged struggle between British and US sloops-of-war, highlighting the differences between the war on the lakes and the war on the oceans during the Age of Fighting Sail. It reveals the circumstances under which these ships were built, how they were armed, and the human story behind their construction and use in battle.
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  • World War I Seaplane and Aircraft Carriers

    Mark Lardas

    Product Code: AZJCB
    Paperback
    In 1910 the first aircraft was successfully launched from a small wooden platform on a stationary ship. Just four years later, seaplane-carrying warships were being used to launch the first naval air raids, and by 1918 the first aircraft carrier to feature a full-length flight deck was in service. High quality artwork and historical photographs help author Mark Lardas tell the fascinating story of the pioneering years of naval aviation, covering such historic clashes as the Japanese siege of Tsingtao, the British raid against German Zeppelin bases at Cuxhaven and the Battle of Jutland, which saw the first airplane take part in a naval battle. Through detailed analysis he explores their development from hastily adapted merchant ships to the launch of HMS Argus, the first aircraft carrier to have a full-length flight deck, and shows how they paved the way for the aircraft carriers of the future.
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  • Shenandoah 1864

    Mark Lardas

    Product Code: ALMMY
    Paperback
    For three years of war the Union and the Confederacy had battled over the picturesque Shenandoah Valley of Virginia. Nestled between the Blue Ridge Mountains to the east and the Ridge-and-Valley Appalachians to the west, the valley served as the granary for the Army of Northern Virginia. It provided bread and beef to feed this shield of the Confederacy and remounts for its cavalry. This beautifully illustrated study explores one of the major campaigns of the Civil War in 1864, which saw a decisive victory for the Union forces under Sheridan and featured some of the most famous commanders of the war, including Philip Sheridan, Jubal Early, George Armstrong Custer, John B. Gordon and George Crook.
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