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Famous Commonwealth Squadrons of WW2
No.453 (RAAF) Squadron

by Phil H. Listemann


S u m m a r y

Title and Author Famous Commonwealth Squadrons of WW2
No.453 (RAAF) Squadron 1941-1945
by Phil H. Listemann
ISBN: 978-2-9532544-1-9
Media & Contents: 90 A5 sized pages plus a card cover, 28 period black and white photos, 12 full colour side profiles, one page of individual markings also in colour and one map.
Price: 30.00 available online from Philiedition's website
Review Type: First Read
Advantages: Interesting subject, well covered with a very readable text; incudes high quality artwork, colour profiles, maps and photographs.
Disadvantages: No table of contents or Index.


Reviewed by Brett Green

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453 Squadron RAAF bore the brunt of the Japanese invasion of Singapore in 1941-42 flying the obsolescent Brewster Buffalo. The pilots were highly motivated and skilled, however they were unable to prevent one of the worst military disasters suffered by the British Empire. The Squadron was disbanded after its evacuation from Singapore, and reformed a few weeks later in the United Kingdom as an Australian Fighter Squadron in Europe.



453 Squadron built an impressive record in their second iteration, operating Spitfires from 1942 until after the end of the war when they performed occupation duties in Germany. For this new role, 453 Squadron was initially equipped with the Spitfire Mk.Vb, followed by the Mk.Vc, IX, XVI and XIV.

Phileditions' latest book in their "Famous Commonwealth Squadrons" series covers this unit. The book contains 90 pages between its soft covers. More than 60 photographs (some published for the first time) are included. These are large and well reproduced. 12 colour profiles of Buffalos and various marks of Spitfire also illustrate the book. The artwork is by well-known aviation artist and historian Malcolm Laird. It is well up to his high standards - lovely stuff and very inspiring for modellers. Please note the reproduction below is distorted. The profiles look much nicer in the book!



The first 32 pages cover the history and operations, generously interspersed with photos nd illustrations. The bulk of the book is actually a series of Appendices including a full pilot roster, claims, losses, maps, airfields and the operational diary.



My only real criticism is the lack of a Table of Contents and Index, making it difficult to find specific information.




Phileditions' "No.453 (RAAF) Squadron 1941-1945" is an excelletn summary of the history, operations, aircraft and personnel of this important unit, covering its change of fortunes from the disaster of Singapore to victory in Europe and beyond.

Anyone interested in Spitfire Squadrons or the Royal Australian Air Force should snap one up while they can, as only 500 will be produced.

Thanks to Philedition for the review sample

Review Copyright 2009 by Brett Green
This Page Created on 27 August, 2009
Last updated 27 August, 2009

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