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Books by Martin Bowman

  • The Vought F4U Corsair

    Martin Bowman

    Product Code: BRODF
    Paperback
    First flown in 1940, the prototype Vought F4U Corsair instantly became the fastest fighter in the world and the fastest US aircraft of any description. Powered by a huge 18-cylinder Pratt and Whitney Double Wasp engine driving an enormous 13 feet 4 inch propeller, the first Corsairs were capable of 417mph. This figure would rise to nearly 450mph in later versions. Production began in 1941, not only by Vought but also by Goodyear and Brewster, and the F4U entered service with the US Navy in September 1942. The aircraft subsequently came to be extensively used from land and sea by the US Marines, Royal Navy and Royal New Zealand Air Force. Famous squadrons like VMF-214 'The Black Sheep' and VF-17 'Jolly Rogers', along with many others, maintained total ascendancy over the Japanese for the rest of the war - a remarkable achievement for a single type. After the Second World War the Corsair remained in production and was used with distinction by the French in Indo-China and again by the US Navy in Korea. Since then Corsairs have achieved significant success in air races and more and more are being restored to fly for museums and warbird enthusiasts the world over. This comprehensive new book combines technical information and detailed development history with a fascinating combat history told, in many cases, by the Second World War and Korean War pilots themselves. Well researched, readable and illustrated with scores of rare and previously unpublished photographs, Vought F4U Corsair is the perfect book for any fan of the 'bent wing bird'.
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  • Duxford and the Big Wings 1940-45

    Martin Bowman

    Product Code: BHYOE
    Hardback
    A pulsating account of the young RAF and American fighter boys who flew Spitfires, Hurricanes, Thunderbolts and Mustangs during 1940-45. It is unique in that the story is told using first person accounts from RAF, German and American 'Eagles' who fought in the skies over England in the Battle of Britain in the summer of 1940 and the great air offensives over occupied-Europe from 1942 onwards. The first five and a half chapters cover the Battle of Britain period when the RAF squadrons fought dog fights with the Luftwaffe and then fought them in gathering strength using the 'Big Wings to meet the bomber fleets attacking London. The second part of the book covers the Eagle squadron period, which was expanded with America's entry into the war. The action moves to the USAAF 'Big Wings' of Thunderbolts and Mustang fighters that flew escort missions and duelled with the Luftwaffe over the continent during the massive bomber raids on German targets in France, the Low Countries and the Reich itself. A whole host of incredible first hand accounts by British, Polish, Czech, German and American fighter pilots permeate the action and describe the aerial battles as only they can. This unique book also includes many accounts and photos that have not previously been seen before while the rich mix of combat accounts from all sides are brought together for the first time in one volume.Britain's largest 2 day air show is held at Duxford with many booksellersThe Official USAAF War Memorial is situated at Duxford and attracts many US visitors - plus big American sales potential
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  • Fighter Bases of WW2 US 8th Army Air Force Fighter Command USAAF 1942-45

    Martin Bowman

    Product Code: BHPTG
    Paperback
    This book covers the bases used during the Second World War by the American fighter units that flew in support of the 8th Air Force's heavy bomber forces.The long-range Lightnings, Thunderbolts and Mustangs escorted the Mighty Eighth's Flying Fortresses and Liberators on their deep penetration raids into occupied Europe and Germany. Fighter cover was vital, since the USAAF flew daylight raids and in the early months the number of US aircraft lost to the defending Luftwuffe fighters was unacceptably high.The airfields included are Bodney, Bottisham, Boxted, Debden, Duxford, East Wretham, Fowlmere, Halesworth, Honington, Horsham St. Faith, King's Cliffe, Leiston, Martlesham Heath, Raydon, Steeple Morden, Wattisham and Wormingford.This book looks at the history and personalities associated with each base, what remains today and explores the favourite local wartime haunts where aircrew and ground crew would have sought well-deserved entertainment and relaxation. Other museums and places that are relevant will also be described and general directions on how to get them included.
    • £12.99
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  • The Men Who Flew the Mosquito

    Martin Bowman

    Product Code: BHLQY
    Paperback
    The two-engined Mosquito was one of the classic aircraft of the Second World War. Famously wooden-built, its graceful lines and powerful performance have made it into an airborne icon. Its operational versatility as a fighter, low level bomber and reconnaissance aircraft was unsurpassed.In this book we get the first-hand crew accounts of a selection of the actions and missions that the 'Mossie' undertook. These include audacious raids on Nazi HQs and Gestapo jails - real precision attacks carried out by ace fliers.
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  • Mosquito Mayhem

    Martin Bowman

    Product Code: BGYQA
    Hardback
    "The flak started about four or five minutes before the target and immediately it was apparent that it was intense and extremely accurate. Oboe entailed the pilot flying dead straight and level for ten minutes on the attack run. Suddenly a tremendous flash lit up the sky about 50 yards ahead of our nose and exactly at our altitude. Within a tenth of a second we were through the cloud of dirty yellowish-brown smoke and into the blackness beyond. I shall never forget the spontaneous reaction of both my pilot and myself. We turned our heads slowly and looked long and deep into one another's eyes - no word was spoken - no words were needed."The Mosquito was probably World War II's most versatile combat aircraft. This book contains hundreds of first-hand accounts from many of the two-man crews who flew in them; pilots and navigators. It portrays the dramatic experiences of flying in its many roles as pathfinder, night fighter, reconnaissance aircraft, precision bombing and low-level ground attack aircraft. It describes many of the RAF's most audacious raids on prime but difficult targets where carpet bombing by heavy bombers was likely to be ineffective and cause unnecessary casualties to civilians. It is a remarkable record of the aircraft and the men that flew them.Martin Bowman is one of Britain's leading aviation authors and has written many books on World War II aviation history. He is Britain's leading authority on the Mosquito and lives in Norwich in Norfolk
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  • Cuba Cars and Cigars

    Martin Bowman

    Product Code: BDFAH
    Paperback
    'Cuba Cars and Cigars' is full of glorious colour images of the rare and varied Cuban-owned 1950s American and European automobiles, trucks, and station wagons that were imported before 1961. Among the famous Marques that feature are Cadillacs, Chevies, Buick, Dodge, Oldsmobile, Ford, Packard, De Soto, Pontiac, Plymouth, Edsel, Mercury and Metropolitan, Hillman, Singer and Austin, Nash Sedans, a Lloyd 600 German 2-cylinder/4-stroke 596cc car, Ramblers and SAABs, Mercs, Humber, Standard Vanguard, Ford Consul/Zephyr, Hillman Husky and Minx, Singer Gazelle and Austin. Most of these vehicles are still in running order, and are passed down from generation to generation. Trucks include Fords, a Fargo, Dodges and Chevys, not forgetting cigars, street urchins, and the lovely ladies of Havana. All of these are uniquely photographed, written and compiled by 'our man in Havana'.
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  • Air War Market Garden: A Bridge Too Far

    Martin Bowman

    Product Code: BDBWM
    Hardback
    This, the fourth and final volume of the series on Market-Garden in September 1944 reveals the final fate of the troops at Oosterbeek and the decision to evacuate all able bodied men in Operation 'Berlin' as well as the subsequent Operation 'Pegasus' when the Allies tried to return as many beleaguered troops back to Allied lines as possible. Was Arnhem indeed 'a bridge Too Far'? While 'Market-Garden' certainly was a heroic failure conducted at great cost it is debatable whether it contributed materially to the ultimate victory or was a foolish sacrifice of thousands of troops, aircrew and Dutch civilians in an ill-conceived assault on the German-held bridges across the Lower Rhine. There is no doubting the gritty, gallant and valorous contribution on the part of the British, Dominion, American and Polish paratroopers, the RAF and USAAF aircrews and their German opponents and Dutch civilians. Their incredible, illuminating and often under-stated accounts of extraordinary courage, camaraderie, shared terror and encounters with the enemy offer a more personalised view of 'Market-Garden' through the words of those who were there at the heart of the action. These tales are complemented by the author's background information supplemented by the inclusion of daily timelines that give an overall picture of each battle and air operation.
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  • Last of the Lancasters

    Martin Bowman

    Product Code: BBSNO
    Hardback
    'The Lancasters looked like enormous deadly black birds going off into the night; somehow they looked different when they came back. The planes carried from this field 117,000 pounds of high explosives and the crews flew all night to drop the load as ordered. Now the trains would not run between France and Italy for a while, not on those bombed tracks anyhow. Here are the men who did it, with mussed hair and weary faces, dirty sweaters under their flying suits, sleep-bright eyes, making humble comradely little jokes and eating their saved-up chocolate bars' - Martha Gellhorn This riveting and highly intriguing collection of pilot and civilian reminiscences works to commemorate the spirit of the almighty Lancaster bomber. Each chapter is dedicated to a unique individual or group of individuals who took part in its history in some capacity. Be they pilot, civilian, or journalist, each played their own part and their accounts offer a host of fascinating insights. Episodes featured include the battle for Munich and the Nuremburg and Berlin Raids. Stories of PoWs downed in their Lancasters and captured in enemy territory also feature, communicating a real sense of peril experienced behind enemy lines. Two sections of fascinating black and white photographs supplement and complete this trawl through the history of the Lancaster bomber and the men and women who witnessed its glory days.
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  • Flight Craft 7: V Bombers

    Martin Bowman

    Product Code: BAGCW
    Paperback
    Britain's desire to stay at the leading edge in the design and development of modern jet powered aircraft was born in the later stages of the Second World War. The Royal Air Force sent requests to the leading aircraft manufactures for a variety of specifications, amongst which was one for a long-range heavy bomber. Three designs were accepted and eventually went into production - these became the V-Bomber Force. The Vickers Valiant, Vulcan and Victor saw prolific and varied service during the course of their careers. This book contains fabulous colour profiles (created by Dave Windle) of all three types in different operational modes, configurations and colour schemes. Martin Bowman has written detailed descriptions and photographs to create the perfect enthusiasts reference. This enhanced and revised edition (the book was initially published in 2009) comes complete with model-making content as well as a host of brand new design features, making for a lively new addition to our esteemed Flight Craft series.
    • £12.39
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  • The Second World War by Night

    Martin Bowman

    Product Code: ARZFA
    Hardback
    This new volume from Martin Bowman examines the closing years of the Second World War, as the tide turned against the German and Axis forces. It includes riveting first-hand accounts from German fighter pilots caught up in some of the most dramatic night time conflicts of the latter war years. Viewing Bomber Command's operations through the eyes of the enemy, the reader is offered a fresh and intriguing perspective. Set in context by Bowman's historical narrative, these snippets of pilot testimony work to offer an authentic sense of events as they played out.
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  • Voices in Flight- Pathfinder Air Force

    Martin Bowman

    Product Code: ARZET
    Hardback
    Charged with the formidable task of locating and marking German targets for attack by the main force of Bomber Command, the Path Finder Force - 8 (PFF) Group and those in 5 Group - was perhaps the most experienced and highly trained elite group created within the Royal Air Force during World War II. Its aircrew members were almost entirely volunteers and despite the terrifying odds against any individual (or complete crew) ever completing the sixty-sorties tour of operations with the PFF, the most feared 'punishment' was to forfeit their coveted Path Finder wings and be posted away to other units. This remarkable evocation of a remarkable force is made up largely of narrative and photographs from the men who flew with or were an integral part of the PFF. They alone are best qualified to recount the Path Finder story.While the subject matter herein largely covers the four-engined Stirlings, Halifaxes and Lancasters and twin-engined Mosquitoes of 8 (PFF) Group, the Path Finding techniques used by 5 Group are not forgotten and there are two chapters detailing the work of the 'Oboe' Mosquitoes and other markers in support of the night and day Main Force raids on German and Italian cities and individual targets in the Reich. This book is a fitting tribute to the PFF and in particular, to the crews who failed to return from the PFF's many operations.
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  • Nuremberg- The Blackest Night in RAF History

    Martin Bowman

    Product Code: ARDIZ
    Hardback
    This is a brand-new, updated history of the Nuremberg Raid, taking advantage of new stores of information that have come to light in recent years. In his usual, highly-praised style, Martin Bowman utilises first-hand snippets of pilot testimony to supplement his well-researched historical narrative, offering a richly evocative and authentic sense of events as they played out during the course of this iconic raid. Having access to extensive archives of images ensures that this is also a visually pleasing and comprehensive account of one of the most important episodes of Second World War history.The night of the 30/31 March 1944 marked the culmination of the costly Battle of Berlin. It witnessed Bomber Command hampered to a devastating extent by both the defences of the enemy and the dangerous caprices of the weather. Many losses were recorded and the raid soon gained a dark reputation amongst bomber crews and the general public. Indeed, it came to be regarded thereafter as something of a turning point in the course of the entire conflict. Here, Martin Bowman explains all the various difficulties that beset the forces of Bomber Command on this, its blackest night.
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  • Nachtjagd, Defenders of the Reich 1940 - 1943

    Martin Bowman

    Product Code: AQVVL
    Hardback
    This new volume from Martin Bowman examines the first three years of the Second World War, consolidating first-hand accounts from German fighter pilots caught up in some of the most dramatic night time conflicts of the early war years. Viewing Bomber Command's operations through the eyes of the enemy, the reader is offered a fresh and intriguing perspective. Set in context by Bowman's historical narrative, these snippets of pilot testimony work to offer an authentic sense of events as they played out.
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  • Deep Sea Hunters

    Martin Bowman

    Product Code: AKUQH
    Hardback
    Beginning with the disastrous Norwegian Campaign, it takes in the numerous attacks on the bustling German submarine base at Lorient, the attack on Brest, as well as many other pivotal and memorable events to enliven the history of the sea-lanes during the Second World War. Battles with the U-boats are brought to the fore, with details and experiences not only of the RAF pilots of Catalinas, Whitleys, Hudsons and Sunderlands, but also those of the targeted U-boat crews. In scenes reminiscent of 'Das Boot' German (and Italian) U-boat crews tell of their fears and experiences while under depth-charge attack and fire from above by Liberators, Fortresses, Halifaxes, Sunderlands and Mosquitoes. The 'big-game sport' of 'hunting U-boats', as it was termed, is relayed in full and gripping detail, with first-hand accounts from U-boat attackers punctuating Bowman's dramatic prose and resting alongside those of the German submariners. This two-sided history is sure to appeal to all enthusiasts interested in gaining a balanced insight into Second World War naval history.
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  • Air War Market Garden: Shrinking Perimeter

    Martin Bowman

    Product Code: AGXEG
    Hardback
    The third volume of this four-part series on Operation 'Market-Garden' in September 1944 draws on many individual soldiers and airmen's narratives to tell the story of the ongoing fight to keep the Hell's Highway' open to relieve 1st Airborne at Arnhem, and the brave attempts to re-supply them from the air. As in previous volumes, this account offers a unique perspective on all aspects of aerial activity during this pivotal operation. This volume tells of the Allied effort to retain supremacy in the skies. Individual tales of gallantry work to humanize the account, rooting the action very much in the human experience of conflict. Such tales include the never to be forgotten story of the 'Angel of Arnhem' and the acts of chivalry that existed on both sides - even among battle hardened units such as the SS Panzer Grenadiers. All are unique in the annals of war. These and the other personal recollections of Allied soldiers and airmen and their German adversaries tell of extreme courage, camaraderie and shared terror under fire. And they are complemented by the author's background information that puts each narrative into wartime perspective.
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