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F-104 Starfighter

F-104 Starfighter Book Review

By Michael Benolkin

Date of Review November 2006 Title F-104 Starfighter
Author Martin W. Bowman Publisher The Crowood Press
Published 2000 ISBN 1-86126-314-7
Format 192 pages, hardbound MSRP (USD) $52.95


Crowood Press has quite an impressive list of aviation titles in their line-up. One that I had previously missed has now been added to my library, the Lockheed F-104 Starfighter.

The title covers the development and operational history of the aircraft, complete with an impressive array of photographs and illustrations.

The center of the book contains eight pages full of color photography that includes a variety of end-of-service special color schemes.

I particularly like the coverage of the Zero-Length-Launch experience of getting an F-104 airborne without using a runway. That had to be some ride!

The title goes into nice detail about the differences in the aircraft in each Air Force, the serial numbers and squadron assignments, and some interesting combat history as well. Many know about the F-104 in USAF service in Vietnam, but many forget the combat it saw in Pakistani Air Force against India, or in Taiwanese service keeping the Chinese Air Force at bay. Nice!

The coverage of this title includes:

  • A New Star Is Born
  • In The Ascendancy - USAF Service 1958-1975
  • G For Germany
  • Versions and Project Models
  • NATO Operators
  • Star Warrior - Lt.Col. David L. Bashow
  • Winning Their Spurs
  • Worldwide Military Operators
  • Shooting For The Stars

This book is a must-have for the modeler and the historian alike! You can purchase this and any of the Crowood series from your favorite bookstore.