British Heavy Cruisers 1939 – 45

Published on
Review Author(s)
Book Author(s)
Angus Konstam, illustrations by Paul Wright
Other Publication Information
Softcover, 48 pages, 36 b/w photos, 2 b/w sketches, 11 color illustrations
Product / Stock #
Company: Osprey Publishing - Website: Visit Site
Provided by: Osprey Publishing - Website: Visit Site
Box Art

This volume by Osprey/New Vanguard gives an overview of British 8 inch gunned cruisers (heavy cruisers by definition) in WW II. Four major sections deal with the design and development of the ships, the specifications of each class, the service history of each ship and a finally a description of the ships' armament and operation, the last part of which actually should have been a separate section as it is a general evaluation of the ships and their effectiveness.

The text is concise and efficiently written, containing a good deal of information in a small space. There are summary charts on the details of each class with one over arching table with comparative information such as dimensions, performance, armament, etc. There are b/w photos illustrating many of the ships but they are almost all of the entire ship from a distance or an angle, so they are not useful for detail.

One treat is the illustrations by known naval artist, Paul Wright. They are all in color and depict ships of the type in various camouflage schemes. There is one two-page illustration that is a partial cutaway of HMS Cornwall with the major parts of the ship called out.

This is a useful introductory general reference book. While it does not go into a great deal of detail, the information provided will give the reader a good background on these ships and how they functioned.

Thank you to Osprey for providing the review copy of this book


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