Panther Medium Tank
Italian Front, 1944-45
Pen & Sword Books
by Dennis Oliver
Reviewed by Graham Carter
From the well-known and respected book company Pen & Sword comes another of these super-useful books for the AFV modeller. To quote from the web-site:
“An innovative series following in the footsteps of the popular Ship Craft and Flight Craft ranges, launching in Autumn 2016, TankCraft aims to provide modelmakers and tank enthusiasts with a new standard of primarily visual reference of both full-size tanks and their scale models.
Each book will contain detailed technical information imparted through drawings and photographs while the meticulously researched full-colour profiles will provide a complete reference for paint schemes and markings. In addition, every volume of the Tank Craft series will feature summaries of design histories and operational careers, and review of available kits. Each book is devoted to an iconic tank type – chosen for its popularity as a modelling subject – and the series will provide coverage across a range of different criteria, showcasing the best of the world's tank types and providing invaluable insight and guidance for modelmakers.”
The books cover a huge variety of AFVs, mostly of WWII vintage but also a few more modern ones such as the Chieftain, Challenger and Scorpion. All follow the same format and most are from the pen of Dennis Oliver.
Each has a glossy card cover with photos in colour of a model and profile and some period B&W images on front and back. The strong binding allows the pages to open flat for ease of reading and reference during a build. Inside are 64 quality semi-flat pages divided into a number of sections, in this case:
All of this information is well laid out and clearly expressed, especially noting the tiny variations between vehicles. Many close-up images reveal great details of value to the modeller. One small issue is the use of white text notation over pale backgrounds that is not always easy to read - see pages 11,28 , 29 and 30. All-in-all, though, this volume is an absolute feast for the model maker as images are large enough and well-annotated, backed up with excellent text, as to be very useful. Highly recommended to the military historian and AFV modeller of this iconic piece of German equipment.
Thanks to Pen & Sword Books for the sample