Author: Grégory Pons
Hardbound 192 pages,
320mm x 235mm
The book is rather big and also pretty heavy. I noticed no printing issues on my sample and the paper quality is excellent (glossy surface). The pictures are superb and that's a good thing because there are a lot: approximately 1000! Some profiles and Artwork (mainly Nose Arts) are also present and they are nicely done.
Chapter 1 - 306th and 305th Bomb. Group (S/Sgt., later 2nd Lt. Harry Brown -Tech. Officer)
Chapter 2 - 381th Bomb. Group (1st Lt. Richard Schmidt - pilot)
Chapter 3 - 446th Bomb. Group (1st Lt. Roy H. Houghton - Bombardier)
Chapter 4 - 457th Bomb. Group (S/Sgt. Thomas D. Dalrymple - Gunner)
Chapter 5 - 385th Bomb. Group (Sgt. Irvin Courtad - Photographer)
Chapter 6 - 447th Bomb. Group (2nd Lt. Allen J. Miller - Navigator))
Chapter 7 - 445th Bomb. Group (Sgt. James E. Pefley - Photographer)
Chapter 8 - 389th Bomb. Group (Corp. Anne L. Pennick - Air WAC)
Chapter 9 - 384th Bomb. Group (1st Lt. Harold Stern - Navigator)
Chapter 10 - 379th Bomb. Group (Anonymous)
Chapter 11 - 467th Bomb. Group (S/Sgt. Lee Malus - Gunner)
Chapter 12 - 385th Bomb. Group (Lt. Luther Wallace - Pilot)
Chapter 13 - 351th Bomb. Group (Anonymous)
Chapter 14 - 25th Bomb. Group (T/Sgt. James T. Ryon - Mechanic)
Aknowledgments - Bibliography
I won't write too much about the text and will, like the book, let the pictures speak. However, here's a list of what is included in Gregory Pons' "8th Air Force":
- An 8th A.F. Bomber Group's flow chart.
- A geographical localization of the 8th A.F.'s Bomber Groups.
- For each Bomb. Group mentionned (in each Chapter), a short historical text with the main missions flown.
- Pictures of planes in flight and on the ground (mainly B-17s and B-24s but also P-47s, P-51s etc...)
- Pictures of crew members (in combat, on the ground, in private etc...)
- Pictures of uniforms and flying suits (these are modern color pictures of men dressed with original equipment)
- Pictures of equipment (parachutes, headphones, helmets, gloves, maps, etc...)
- Pictures of private items (medals, log books, letters, etc...)
- Pictures of contemporay objects (newspapers articles, pin-up cards, etc...)
In fact, the Author based it's book on the personal photo-albums of crew men (see content) as well as on original USAAF equipment from that period.
Histoire & Collections' 8th Air Force book is a fantastic photo-album. If you are searching for historical background, profiles or detailed walkaround pictures, this reference is probably not for you. If you want to learn more about the crew members of B-17s and B-24s of the Mighty Eight, then this is a good choice as you will find in it plenty of informations about, equipment, uniforms, flying suits etc... Highly recommended to U.S. Heavy Bomber lovers wanting to know a little bit more about the men behind the machines.
Histoire & Collections
5, avenue de la république F-75541
Paris Cédex 11
Nota Bene: The book I purchased has a French text but an English version is also available.
Please remember, when contacting retailers or manufacturers, to mention that you saw their products highlighted here - on AeroScale.
Another book about the 8th Air Force... but what a book! Filled with astonishing pictures, Histoire & Collections choosed a rather original way to show the Mighty Eight. This time it's from the point of view of the bomber crews. The result is a poignant testimony to the sacrifice of men, who were for the majority very young people.