New: German Naval Camouflage Vol I + Vol II: 1939-45 (Hardback)

German Naval Camouflage Vol I: 1939-41

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Author: John Asmussen, Eric Leon
Seaforth Publishing
Number of Pages: 192

For half a century German warship camouflage has been something of a mystery for warship enthusiasts and modelmakers. The widespread destruction of naval archives at the end of the war left little documentation, while the ad hoc application of ‘unofficial’ schemes in theatres like Norway led to many variegated and frequently altered patterns. This book, therefore, is based on close scrutiny of all available photos, including many only recently discovered, collated with the first-hand testimony of Kriegsmarine survivors. After decades of study, the authors are the world’s leading experts, and their work challenges many accepted views, while greatly expanding the general understanding of the subject.

The fruits of their labours are presented in the form of exquisite colour illustrations of every scheme and variation for which evidence is available. For major ships these are sometimes only months apart, giving as complete a representation of their camouflage history as possible. There are no speculative views – if, for example, only the starboard side is known, there is no attempt to ‘reconstruct’ a port side – so all information is reliable.

This volume covers destroyers and all larger ships during the early war years, with a second part devoted to 1942-45 planned for completion in 2013. For warship enthusiasts its publication will be a major event, and it is certain to become the standard reference.

German Naval Camouflage Volume II: 1942 – 1945 (Hardback)

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Number of Pages: 168

This book completes a highly original and superbly illustrated two-volume survey of German naval camouflage and markings in the Nazi era. On first publication in 2012 the 1939-1941 volume was quickly recognised by warship enthusiasts and modelmakers as a major step forward in the understanding of a complex and much debated topic. It is already considered the standard reference, and this second volume is keenly awaited.

Although a few crucial documents have recently come to light, this study is largely based on close scrutiny of all available photos, including many newly discovered, collated with the first-hand testimony of Kriegsmarine survivors. After decades of study, the authors are probably the world’s leading experts, and their work challenges many accepted views, while greatly expanding the general understanding of the subject. The fruits of their labours are presented in the form of exquisite colour illustrations of every scheme and variation for which evidence is available. This volume covers all major surviving ships down to destroyers from 1942 to the end of the war, and adds a new section on torpedo boats.

While there can never be a last word on such an elusive and poorly documented subject, these two volumes will remain the most authoritative work in the field for many years to come.