‘X-Planes of Europe’ by Tony Buttler and Jean-Louis Delezenne covers “secret research aircraft from the Golden Age 1946-1974”, as it says on the dust jacket. Tony has covered the British and German projects in his usual thorough and precise style and, although the subjects will be familiar to British readers, Tony has uncovered many new and fascinating details.

However, I must say that I found the French aircraft chapters the most intriguing having forgotten that there were so many, including pioneering supersonic aircraft and unusual power plant concepts. Of particular interest are the early VTOL aircraft, the Atar Volant and the Coleopteres. This is a handsome book of great interest which is published by Hikoki at 34.95 but can be found for less on the internet (ISBN 9 781902 109213).

Book Reviews


A book I came across by chance is ‘The Jet Race and the Second World War’, by Sterling Michael Pavelec, Assistant Professor of History at Hawaii Pacific University. This is a scholarly work with numerous notes on sources of information. The author, unlike many others who have tackled this topic, has no axe to grind and covers the work in Britain, Germany, the USA and the USSR in an unbiased manner. It is a very useful to have all the strands of the history of jet engine development in one volume. It is published by Praeger Security International as ISBN-10:0-275-99355-8.