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U-Boot Im Focus No.14

Start-Verlag

S u m m a r y :

Catalogue Number:

Edition No 14: U-Boot Im Focus

ISBN: 978-3-941437-33-3

Contents & Media:

Soft-cover, staple binding, A4 portrait format, 56 pages (with some colour images and printing).

Price:

Available on-line from Luftfahrtverlag START:

Prices for single edition No 13, including postage:

Location

Bank Transfer or Cash

Paypal

Surface

Airmail

Surface

Airmail

Germany

€16.80

 

€17.55

 

Rest of Europe

€18.80

€20.80

€19.55

€21.55

Rest of World

€18.80

€24.80

€19.55

€25.55

Prices  for three Editions, Nos 13 to 15, including postage:

Location

Bank Transfer or Cash

Paypal

Surface

Airmail

Surface

Airmail

Germany

€46.00

 

€48.25

 

Rest of Europe

€52.00

€58.00

€54.25

€60.25

Rest of World

€52.00

€70.00

€54.25

€72.25

Or from Hannants as a single edition for £16.30

Click for currency conversion.

Review Type:

First Read.

Advantages:

High quality text and photos.

Disadvantages:

None noted.

Conclusion:

U-Boot im Focus provides a fascinating glimpse into the world of Germany’s World War II submariners, along with some great ideas for modelling subjects.

Reviewed by Brad Fallen


U-Boot Im Focus #13 is available online from Squadron.com

FirstRead

U-Boot Im Focus is a series of soft-cover books from German publisher Axel Urbanke, whose company Luftfahrtverlag Start also produces the Luftwaffe Im Focus series that now runs to nearly 30 volumes.  The intention of both series, according to the company website, is through publishing...

...largely-unknown photographs and thoroughly-researched texts, [to] …document all aspects of operations by various branches of the [German] armed services [in World War II].Equal space is devoted to the fate of the soldiers and technical and historical points of view.

 

 

Edition No.14 of U-Boot Im Focus was published in 2017 and is typical of the series.  Text is in both German and English and contents breakdown is typical of the series, beginning with a brief editorial before moving to the following sections:

  • Reader’s Forum, as the title suggests, provides an opportunity for readers to provide information or photographs that complement (or in some cases correct) material published in earlier volumes.
  • Type II B Boats, Type VII C Boats, and Type IX C Boats – these three min-chapters use high-quality photos and detailed captions to tell the stories – in whole or part – of several boats.  I can’t vouch for the German text, but the English writing is matter-of-fact and compelling, drawing you in to the actions of the boats and their crew.
  • Conning Towers discusses a unique camouflage scheme, and includes a full-colour illustration of the conning tower in question.
  • Colour Photos – subtitled ‘the coastline’, this double-page spread shows two evocative photos of U-boats leaving on and arriving from patrol.
  • Pennants – a single photo of a flag adorned with the silhouette of a four-engined bomber is accompanied by a description of an eventful patrol for U-415 in 1943.
  • Boat in Focus:  Gulf of Finland Area of Operations – Actions by U-481 in the Eastern Baltic – this 21-page article is the meat of this volume, and tells the story of U-481’s patrols in the Gulf of Finland between June and December 1944.  The usual high-quality photographs, a full-colour, triple page profile of U-481, and a smaller colour illustration of the boat’s conning tower accompany the text.
  • Documents matches an illustration of a U-boat engineering qualification – in this case the Depth Control Master Diploma – with a description of the (rigorous and harrowing) training required to gain it.
  • Fates tells a story set within the larger tragedy of convoy PQ-17 in mid-1942, when U-334 was accidentally attached and damaged by Ju 88s.  This vignette is set off by several photos of the U-334 leaving Trondheim on this fateful patrol, its crew decked out in English straw and bowler hats.
  • Three more similarly evocative short chapters – Photos with a Story, Scenery, and Unusual – round off Edition no. 14.

The text within each of these chapters is compelling in its own right – it invests you in the fate of its subjects and makes you want to keep reading to find out what happened to them.  However this series is all about the photos, with its emphasis on previously unpublished, high quality images.  And while there are great photos of U-boats, it’s the human subjects that are most interesting.  Many are captured in moments of relaxation, but the underlying tension is also easy to see.

 

  • U-Boot Im Focus No.14 Review by Brad Fallen: Image
  • U-Boot Im Focus No.14 Review by Brad Fallen: Image
  • U-Boot Im Focus No.14 Review by Brad Fallen: Image
  • U-Boot Im Focus No.14 Review by Brad Fallen: Image
  • U-Boot Im Focus No.14 Review by Brad Fallen: Image
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Production values are high.  As well as the uniformly good photos and writing, the drawings and maps are clear and the layout – not a straightforward exercise in a dual-language publication with large photos and a combination of captions and main text – excellent.

 

 

Conclusion

 

On the basis of Edition No.14 of U-Boot im Focus, I’m going to track down some other Luftfahrtverlag Start publications to look at.  I’m particularly interested in Luftwaffe im Focus, a series I’ve heard a lot about over the years but never actually read.  U-Boot im Focus provides a glimpse into the world of Germany’s World War II submariners, along with some great ideas for modelling subjects. 

Thanks to Start Verlag for the sample


U-Boot Im Focus is available online from the Start website



Review Copyright 2018 by Brad Fallen
This Page Created on 12 March, 2018
Last updated 12 March, 2018

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