Nieuport Aircraft of World War One
by Ray Sanger
A Crowood Aviation Series book
Reviewed by Steve Jantscher
For those who have other Crowood Aviation Series books (I have ten), you'll know the high quality of their offerings. All fall into the same hardcover format, 192 pages in a 9x11 inch format with many many photographs, in this case almost three hundred.
This book is divided into five sections through nine chapters, the beginnings of the company by aircraft designer Edouard de Nieuport, pre-war aircraft, war aircraft, their use by WWI combatants, and finally ending with post war developments of wartime aircraft. This is a very good and refreshing mix of subject matter, making this volume a good addition to the library of the generalist, fitting for both modelers and amateur historians. What this book is not is an overly detailed dry modeler's guide. There are no exploded line drawings of cockpit or wire rigging details. For that, the Windsock series of books are your answer. This is a comprehensive guide to the Nieuport family of aircraft that served in WWI.
If that however were all, this would be just another average recounting of dry aircraft designs. What Mr. Sanger presents that breaths life into simple wood and canvas are his middle chapters dealing with the Nieuport aircraft in French, British, Italian, Russian and Eastern front use and the American Expeditionary forces, as well as other air forces (how about a Japanese Nieuport 17?). The stories and the photographs in these middle chapters really make the book stand out from ordinary recounting of airframes produced into a ripping good yarn.
I can very highly recommend this book to those wanting
to build up a comprehensive library about WWI aircraft without spending hundreds
of dollars for the specialized publications that will follow if one gets even
deeper into the study of WWI air to air combat.
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