Books on the Spitfire

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Books - War in the Air - Supermarine Spitfire
Spitfire Photo-Recce Units of World War 2, Andrew Fletcher. Covers both the technical development of the PR Spitfire and its cameras and the operation history of the type, from the early days of one experimental aircraft to its use in many squadrons around the world and to provide coverage of topics from the German Navy to Hitler’s secret weapons as well as making vital contributions to the D-Day landings (Read Full Review)
A Spitfire Girl - One of the World's Greatest Female ATA Ferry Pilots tells her Story, Mary Ellis. The remarkable life story of a ferry pilot with the ATA who flew four hundred different Spitfires and seventy-six different types of aircraft during her flying career, including the jet powered Meteor, then went on to run Sandown airport on the Isle of Wight, probably making her the only female airport manager in Europe at the time! Mary comes across as a remarkable person, with a real desire for speed – as well as her time in Spitfires she was also a successful rally car driver, winning several events (Read Full Review)
Spitfire Aces of the Channel Front 1941-43, Andrew Thomas. Covers the costly three years of ‘leaning over France’, where Fighter Command attempted to dominate the air over France but suffered persistent losses, including many aces and experienced leaders. Mostly filled with short accounts of each day’s fighting, focuses on the experiences of the aces, with some longer descriptions built around eyewitness accounts from the participants. Also has a useful introduction and sections on general changes to the campaign, especially the arrival of new aircraft models on both sides(Read Full Review)
Darwin Spitfires - The Real Battle for Australia, Anthony Cooper . A very detailed fight-by-fight analysis of the efforts by a group of Spitfire squadrons to defend Darwin against Japanese raids, a campaign that saw both sides over-estimate their successes, but that ended with the Japanese withdrawing from the battle as the war went against them elsewhere. A useful addition to the literature both on the Spitfire and on the only major long term attack on Australian soil during the Second World War [read full review]
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Secrets of the Spitfire, Lance Cole. A biography of Beverley Shenstone, a Canadian aeronautical engineer who played the leading role in designing the modified elliptical wing of the Spitfire. Looks at his entire career, from early days in Canada and Germany, through his time in Germany and on to his post-war career in civil aviation, but with a clear focus on that distinctive wing, the science behind it, and the reasons it was so effective. [read full review]
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Images of War: Fighters under Construction in World War Two, Graham M. Simons. A super entry in the Images of War series showing most major British fighters at various stages of construction, allowing us to understand the underlying structures hidden beneath their skins. Also includes sections on propellers, the 20mm cannon, engines and the manufacturing process itself. A very useful book for anyone interested in Second World War aircraft. [read full review]
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Spitfire Sisters (DVD). Looks at the contribution made by the women pilots of the Air Transport Auxiliary, the ferry pilots who made sure that the right aircraft were in the right place during the Second World War. The documentary is built around a series of fascinating interviews with remarkable people, whose love of flying and in particular the Spitfire comes across very clearly, even sixty years after the events they are discussing. [read full review]
Spitfire Mark I/II Aces 1939-41, Dr Alfred Price. Slightly different to many books in the Aircraft of the Aces series, Price splits his material, concentrating on the wider picture in the first part of the book before looking at eleven of the top Spitfire aces in the last two chapters of the book [see more]
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Spitfire Mark V Aces, 1941-45, Dr Alfred Price. A well written and nicely balanced look at the combat career of the Spitfire Mk V and of the men who flew it. The Spitfire V fought in more theatres than the more famous Mk I/II, including over France in 1941, on Malta, in North Africa and even in northern Australia. [see more]
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Spitfire: Flying Legend - 60th Anniversary 1936-96, John M. Dibbs. A beautifully illustrated book focusing on surviving flyable Spitfires, with some very impressive modern colour photos backed up by a good selection of archival pictures and a good selection of relevant quotes from wartime Spitfire pilots [see more]
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Spitfire in Action, Jerry Scutts. This is a good introduction to the complex story of the development of the Spitfire. Despite the title, this book doesn't contain much detail on the actual combat career of the Spitfire, but does cover every version of the fighter from the prototype to the post-war Mk 24, as well as the Seafire line [see more]
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