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Northrop F-20 Tigershark Book Review

By David L. Veres

Date of Review August 2022 Title Northrop F-20 Tigershark
Author Paul Metz Publisher Ginter Books
Published 2023 ISBN 979-8-9854726-6-0
Format 144 pages, softbound MSRP (USD) $59.95


Let’s cut to the chase: if you have any reference on the late, lamented F-20 Tigershark, make it this one.

One of aviation’s great “what ifs”, Northrop’s sleek scion brought the acclaimed, ubiquitous F-5 fighter family to a close with a mere handful of examples.

And now it enjoys full Ginter Books treatment in Northrop F-20 Tigershark – 228 in the publisher’s respected “Air Force Legends” line.

Cramming the terrific tale into 144 pithy, picture-packed pages, author and former Northrop test pilot Paul Metz sows eye candy and epiphanies everywhere.

Over 300 photos – nearly all color – chart F-20 design and development. Close-ups, tech-manual excerpts, and archival corporate drawings illumine specifics. And handy, historical commentary – complete with “Tigershark Voices”, riveting recollections of program participants – trace F-20 evolution.

Disclosures abound. How did Northrop plan to grow the line? Peruse the book’s six illuminating appendices for some startling revelations.

No Ginter Book is complete without a concluding hobby section. And Metz offers a chunky, ten-page survey of the surprisingly wide range of available Tigershark models to several scales.

A page each of F-20 promotional memorabilia and Northrop test pilots further seasons the study. And tables, charts, and a handy “abbreviations and acronyms” glossary conclude contents. But read carefully: not every “abbreviation and acronym” appears on the list.

Now, Ginter Books – pretty please, with sugar atop – may we have companion volumes, to the same superb standard, on all the legendary Northrop N-156 line: F-5A/B, T-38, and F-5E/F?

Robustly recommended!

With thanks to GINTER BOOKS!