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English Electric Lightning in Worldwide Service

English Electric Lightning in Worldwide Service Book Review

By Michael Benolkin

Date of Review October 2008 Title English Electric Lightning in Worldwide Service
Author Andy J. Donovan Publisher The Aviation Workshop Publications Ltd.
Published 2008 ISBN 1-904643-28-0
Format 88 pages, softbound MSRP (BP) £18.50

Review

It was a pleasant surprise to find this new title in my mailbox, and timely as well. This is a monograph covering the English Electric Lightning. While there have been several good titles on the subject, none of them have looked at the aircraft in terms of color schemes and distinctive markings as they appeared in various points in its service with the squadrons that operated the type.

In addition to many good color and B&W photos of the type, this title is well-illustrated with color profiles of the Lightning to provide that look through time. Each profile has a good write-up about the aircraft illustrated, the significance of the markings, selected operational highlights of its service with that unit at that point in time, and other very useful information.

The title is broken down into four sections:

  1. Lightning Prototype/Development (5 pages)
  2. Lightning in service with the Royal Air Force (70 pages)
  3. Lightning in service with the Royal Saudi Air Force (10 pages)
  4. Lightning in service with the Kuwait Air Force (2 pages)

While there are lots of good photos of the Lightning armed with the Firestreak and Red Top missiles as well as the overwing external fuel tanks, what I also found interesting were the underwing rocket pods and bombs that were carried by the Saudi Lightnings. Even more interesting were the twin rocket pods carried under AND over the wings of the Kuwaiti Lightnings - eight rocket pods!

If you're looking to build the new 1/72 Lightning from Trumpeter, the nice 1/48 Lightning from Airfix, or the huge 1/32 Lightning also coming from Trumpeter, here is a good reference to help you select the colors and configuration for your twin-engined masterpiece.

Definitely recommended!

My sincere thanks to The Aviation Workshop Publications Ltd. for this review sample!

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