Monday, 9 December 2013

Published Elsewhere this month

I've been doing some writing on sites other than my own... A book review on the Second World War Military Research Group ( on the Peter Hone's edited book on the Battle of Midway

Thomas C. Hone (ed.), The Battle of Midway: The Naval Institute Guide to the US Navy’s Greatest Victory. Annapolis, MD: Naval Institute Press, 2013. Illustrations. Chronology. Appendices. Notes. Bibliography. Index. Illustrations. Hbk. 360 pp.
Reviewed by Alexander Clarke, PhD Candidate, King’s College London
They say never judge a book by its cover; however, we all do to some extent. The cover of this book does not disappoint. A beautiful descriptive painting wraps around the work in style. Further reading of the book suggests that the cover turns out to undersell its contents. This is a compilation text, with each chapter providing different authors’ perspectives on a part of the preparation for, its events, or the effect of the Battle of Midway. It provides perspectives from both sides of the battle as well as academic opinion. Sourced from Proceedings and Naval History, the publications of the US Naval Institute, the chapters replicate the high standards extent in these publications. Compiled under themes, chapters appear under section headings that act as a quick reference guide for readers. Despite this approach the book’s flow does not feel ‘bitty’, which many compilation books do, and this speaks to the hard work that Hone has put into arranging and editing the contributions.
for full review go to:
and a Piece for the excellent British Naval History ( on the Royal Navy's Fleet Air Arm's propeller fighters of the post-Second World War 1940s and 1950s.

Alexander Clarke of King’s College London provides our first article on the Fleet Air Arm. He asks whether the Royal Navy’s propeller powered attack fighters during the dawn of the jet age the relics of a world war or a capability overlooked? This essay is a study of Fleet Air Arm Propeller aircraft, focusing on those that entered service from 1946-1958 and their operational records
The light fleet Carriers, Triumph, Theseus, Glory and Ocean were at war in Korean waters with outdated piston-engined aircraft expected to battle with the new menace of Communist jet-engined aircraft.” [i]
These words come from the biography of the First Sea Lord and Admiral of the Fleet Caspar John, compiled/written by his daughter from notes he had made. This is the sort of statement which has fed the common misconception of the Fleet Air Arm (FAA) is that after the Second World War was over; it froze and continued to operate the same aircraft it did at the end of the war until it finally began to convert to jet aircraft with the introduction of the Hawker Sea Hawk in 1953. [ii] In reality it didn’t, and neither were jet aircraft immediately appropriated as a panacea – the same year as the Sea Hawk entered service, the turboprop engined Westland Wyvern joined the fleet air arm to replace the Blackburn Firebrand.[iii][iv] Whilst piston engined aircraft continued in use for roles such as airborne early warning – but that is the end of the period.[v]

for full paper please go to

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