Monday 23 May 2022

Book Review: Pz IV, Normandy Campaign Summer 1944, Dennis Oliver (Tank Craft 35)

Yet another excellent entry into Dennis Oliver’s growing library of works for the Tank Craft series in WWII German armour.

This time it’s that workhorse, the Pz IV, all too often overshadowed by it’s more glam’ brothers, the Panthers and Tigers. Specifically we have here the Pz IV, Normandy ‘44. Which, as Oliver enlightens us, mostly means the ausf. H. 

Interestingly, the Tank Craft series did previously publish a title on the Pz IV, covering the whole 1939-45 conflict. I haven’t seen that title. But it gets a few pretty critical reviews online. 

However, back to this more specialist offering. As usual with Oliver we get a comprehensive and thorough treatment: starting with a brief intro, we get the familiar maps and timelines. Then we get the unit histories, followed by the colour profiles - 10 pages with 20 profiles plus lots of other little pics/details - and model showcase. then info on models and after market stuff, wrapping up with Technical Details and Modifications. 

The unit composition diagrams are given, in a slightly different manner from other Oliver books, right at the end, after two pages of tables detailing the production and allocation of these AFVs. 

I’m always somewhat dumbfounded by the degree of detail Oliver goes into. It’s all a bit much for my ageing noggin to really take in. But I do find it fascinating. 

So far Panzers III and IV are very under represented un the Tank Craft series, compared to the Panthers and Tigers. So not only is this a great addition to this series, but I hope it’s the first in a series that redresses that imbalance! 

Great stuff!

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