“Royal Air Force — The Aircraft in Service Since 1918” Paintings by Michael Turner, text by Chaz Bowyer. 208 pp: 11 1/2 x 8 1/2”. (The Howl, Publishing Group Ltd. Astronaut House, Hounslow Road, Feltham, Middlesex. TIV’N 9AR. £8.95).
Here is indeed a book suitable for a Christmas present! It is crammed with Michael Turner’s inimitable paintings (in colour naturally, and his pencil drawings, of RAF aeroplanes I dislike the mere logical term, “Aircraft”) of all kinds and periods, from those of WWI to the jet age, their beginnings and evolution. But these are not mere artist’s studies of the machines. They have the authentic backgrounds applicable to each aeroplane, geographically. sometimes historically, portrayed as accurately as the machines themselves.
The artist, why, does his flying machines better than he manages his racing cars, in my humble view, tells in his Foreword how he became interested — and was later an RAF pilot of aeroplanes from DH Tiger Moth to Nimrod. His friend Raymound Baxter gives us a critical and highly appreciative introduction to Turner’s paintings.
Nor is this all, because the 103 individual aircraft (ahem!) with which this big-paged and beautifully-reproduced book deals are each described and, what is more. there are “thumb-nail” comments on mane of them by those who flew or worked-with such, aeroplanes: a real treat for Christmas afternoon. Moreover, the book’s price is competitive and how appropriate is the publisher’s very aeronautically flavoured English address, — W.B.