Featured Book

"Warship Pictorial #25: IJN Yamato Class Battleships"

by Steve Wiper

Softcover, 64 pages
Published by Classic Warship Publishing
ISBN: 0-9745687-4-0

For a few years now, those of us living outside of Japan have made do with about the best English language reference for the Battleship Yamato in the form of Janusz Skulski's "Anatomy of the Ship: The Battleship Yamato". Many of us have cast an envious eye on the more colorful and verbose Japanese publications that seem to take it a bit further, but the language barrier has kept non-Japanese speakers from gaining more insightful information from these sources, forcing many to simply gaze at the pictures, diagrams & illustrations and come to our own conclusions on their meaning. Classic Warships Publishing is one of the few Western publishers that attempts to bridge that gap between English and Japanese materials by offering its readers as much previously unknown information as possible. (Histories and TROMS courtesy of Bob Hackett and Sander Kingsepp). Steve Wiper has proven with his prior "Warship Pictorial" releases on the "IJN Kongo Class Battleships" and the "IJN Myoko Class Heavy Cruisers" that there is always new stuff is out there to be found if one looks in the right places. In the latest "IJN Yamato Class Battleships" Steve proves his resourcefulness once again. Sure, you will find a few of the old favorite photos of the Yamato that we are all familiar with, but I was amazed to find that Steve had gone the extra mile to find previously unknown (at least to me) photographs of the Yamato and Musashi either at anchor or getting the snot bombed out of them. Of particular interest are of Musashi's fitting out and Yamato's final sortie; very interesting visuals….. The great photos are supplemented by one very large two-page color profile illustration of the Yamato as she appeared shortly after being commissioned. One of my favorite photos is actually the back cover of the soft-bound book which is a colorized photo of Yamato as she is being fitted out at Kure in 1941. There is even a small section in the book dedicated to the sister ship Shinano, which was converted to an Aircraft Carrier mid-way through construction. This book does not delve into the specifics and minutiae of armor layout, thickness, material etc., as that is well covered in other publications (Skulski, et al.) All in all, this is a must for all the Yamatophiles out there who think they have seen all there is to see with regards to these awesome Warships. In my opinion, it is an excellent supplemental to have along with some of the more popular Yamato publications. Kudos to Classic Warships Publishing once again for its hard work.

You can order this book from the following sources: Pacific Front Hobbies, White Ensign Models, The Floating Drydock, Christian Schmidt Bookstore , Colpar Hobbies and all books are sold through the dealers listed above and at your local hobby shop / Military Book Store. (QB)