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Swedish Fortresses

Swedish Fortresses Book Review

by Ray Mehlberger

Date of Review January 2011 Title Swedish Fortresses
Author Jan Forsgren Publisher Mushroom Model Publications
Published 2011 ISBN 978-83-89450-87-6
Format 160 pages, softbound MSRP (BP) £24.99 (approx $39.02 at current rate)

Review

Mushroom Model Publications is based in the UK. Their books are printed in English by their partner Stratus Publications in Sandomierz, Poland. This new book was sent from Stratus very heavily sealed in cardboard to protect it.

The book is hardbound and 128 pages long. It came with a portfolio of 8 fold out pages (23” x 16 ½”) of color profiles and line drawings. This portfolio and the book were shrink-wrapped together and are not to be sold separately it says.

Many USAAF aircraft landed in neutral Sweden during WWII. The Swedish authorities arranged to buy many of these from the US, to supplement their limited and ageing aircraft stocks. The B-17 Flying Fortress was selected for conversion to an airliner, and Saab undertook the work to convert several airframes.

This book tells, for the first time in English, the story of these aircraft and their subsequent careers in Sweden, Denmark and France. No other B-17’s were ever used as airliners, so this is a unique addition to the well-known history of the iconic B-17 Fortress.

One of the last survivors of these Swedish airframes is “Shoo Shoo Baby”, currently being restored in the USA. Details and photos of this restoration are included in the book.

The book is illustrated with 114 black and white photos, both contemporary and of surviving airframes. The portfolio that is shrink-wrapped to this book has eight folded sheets, that are 23” x 16 ½” and printed on both sides. They hold a total of 19 color side profiles, four color 2-views, one color 3-view, and two color 4-views. One of the sheets has 1/72nd scale line drawings that includes 2 cut-away drawings. Three black and white photos appear on these sheets and the color nose art logos for “Shoo Shoo Baby” (which appears 4 times), “Georgia Rebel”, “Veni Vidi Vici” and “Lakanuki”.

Detailed plans of the modified airframes are included. This set will prove to be an invaluable addition to the literature about the B-17, and of interest to aviation historians and scale modelers. Highly recommended.

I want to thank Mushroom Model Publications (MMP) and Casemate for this review sample.

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