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Finnish Bomber Colours 1939-1945

Finnish Bomber Colours 1939-1945 Book Review

By David L. Veres

Date of Review September 2018 Title Finnish Bomber Colours 1939-1945
Author Kari Stenman, Karolina Holda Publisher Mushroom Model Publications
Published 2018 ISBN 9788365281036
Format 250 pages, hardbound MSRP (USD) $62.00

Review

The redoubtable team of Kari Stenman and Karolina Holda returns with Finnish Bomber Colours 1939-1945 from MMP Books – available in North America from Casemate.

The seminal study surveys every Finnish bomber, attack, and close-support type used during World War II – including captured Soviet equipment:

  • Fokker C.X
  • Bristol Blenheim I, I & IV
  • Ilyushin DB-3M & DB-3F
  • Douglas DC-2
  • Westland Lysander I
  • Tupolev SB
  • Dornier Do 17 Z
  • Petlyakov Pe-2 & Pe-3
  • Junkers Ju 88 A

Coverage of each broadly divides into two parts. The first chronicles use, where apt, in the "Winter", "Continuation", and "Lapland" conflicts. And the second recaps camouflage & markings with selected aircraft examples.

The lavishly illustrated chapters include B&W and color photos – many previously unpublished – and extended captions. Tables summarize individual aircraft serials, service, and fates. And detailed comments and reference shots accompany artwork.

Speaking of which: Karolina Holda's outstanding color plates remain among of the finest, most meticulous anywhere. Checking the accuracy of her work against reference photos, I clearly see why she shares authorship with the world-renown Stenman.

Five appendices conclude contents. Three recap camouflage & markings – paints, practices, and patterns, notably Finland's distinctive Sotamaalaus ["Warpaint"]. Check the second for Federal Standard matches to Finnish colors. A fourth lists Mannerheim Cross holders with citations. And the fifth – a table – chronicles "Regiment missions", 1942-1944.

This terrific tome deserves inclusion in every library of Eastern Front air warfare. It – and MMP's companion volumes on Finnish fighters – probably offer English-language readers the finest study, to date, of WWII Finnish warplanes. Get them all.

Rabidly recommended!

With thanks to Casemate for the review copy.