Whether I am reviewing his armor books as now, or his aircraft books, like my previous review on the SBD, I am always finding David Doyle’s books to be tremendous additions to the reference bookshelf. I find myself referring to them numerous times, whether for my own projects or to check on something for friends asking advice. The best advice, of course, is to buy themselves their own copy of the book…and this Legends of Warfare volume on the Tigers is no exception.
The book is not the end all or be all purchase that you’ll never need anything else to buy for the library. It is, however, a good place to start for someone transitioning to armor modeling for the first time, or just looking to build one of the various offerings of Tiger kits available. WWII buffs in general will thoroughly enjoy looking through the texts and various photos. Enough babbling…what’s inside Mike?
After a brief, thorough introduction, we get into the brunt of the book- literally two sections- one on the Tiger I and one on the Tiger II. And what we get are great photographs with well-written captions that explain what you’re seeing. Production photos, crew maintenance photos, and photos of crews in the field at rest or at work. We get Tigers in various states of disarray that includes mud and grime, whitewash, covered in foliage, or covered in crew and gear. Photos of road wheels being worked on, tracks not on tanks any longer, and engines getting pulled out and put back in. All excellent references for someone building a tank with or without an interior. The Tiger I chapter ends on a series of color images of the only operational Tiger I that can be found at the Tank Museum at Bovington, as well as a series of walk around photos of a static tank found inside. The images are crisp and well detailed.
The Tiger II chapter is a bit shorter but follows the same format of excellent b&w photos of production and field Tiger IIs and color images of walk around and close-up detail shots. An information table containing all the vital statistics is also featured in this chapter. Color schemes in the color photos vary and we get some excellent interior shots included here as well which would’ve been great for the recent Airfix Tiger I had built.
I knew this was going to be a great book when I was waiting for it to arrive in the mail. Opening up the book to David’s typed note offering the reviewer the chance to ask for scans of photos instead of exposing the book to possible spine-damaging positioning on the scanner gives an indication of the care he puts into his work, and the shared enjoyment of the finished product. I contacted him to take advantage of his offer, and found him to be extremely helpful and courteous. The book did not disappoint—I think you too will appreciate all the work that came with it, and that it could be a most valuable addition to your library. I am extremely grateful to David for his help and for the review sample he provided to me and to IPMS-USA.