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Book Review from website

Reviewed by Kevin Williams

Now we're talking. This particular volume covers the ultra special McDonnell Douglas F-4 Phantom II, and I'm thrilled silly to finally get my hands on this. I've been searching long and hard for better references than I already have on this machine, though I actually have quite a lot, and now here it is. Being a St. Louis native, I grew accustomed to seeing Phantoms overhead on a regular basis for years, and developed a love for the airplane from the beginning. While I have no photos, unfortunately, I remember seeing, on a few occasions, a Phantom chase plane with the Bicentennial F-15 Eagle; fond days indeed, and just strengthened my passion for the F-4. Everything the Phantom enthusiast could want, and gobs of it, is featured in this book. This volume, I don't hesitate to state, will set the bar for any and all future Phantom references.

The Tamiya F-4 kit(s), at least from what I've read, form a rock solid foundation for a beautiful 1:32 Phantom, and this reference can only help in that endeavor.

As with the majority of titles from this publisher, this is very much a collaborative effort, using photos from many varied sources, each with appropriate photo credits given, and there are quite a substantial number of them, especially in this magnificent volume. Printed on good quality semi-glossy stock, the photos are nothing sort of magnificent, highlighting many areas of the air-frame, giving both modelers and aviation enthusiasts alike, a wealth of eye candy on this fascinating plane. If there's a detail of the Phantom that you'd like to see, it's more than likely in this book.

This particular book (No. 015 in the series), depicts the rather interesting and iconic McDonnell Douglas F-4 Phantom II, and it’s geared toward both modelers and aviation enthusiasts alike, being very much a detailed, walk around overview of the type, and that pleases me immeasurably, as it's the major reference type that I seek these days.

Photos are broken down by section; types, forward fuselage, air intakes, Luftwaffe, fuselage, wings, aft fuselage, cockpit (numerous pages, covering the dual cockpit arrangements), front landing gear, main landing gear, Hellenic Air Force, vertical tail, horizontal tail, Turkish Air Force, Islamic Republic of Iran Air Force, maintenance (the majority, but certainly not all, of the detail photos are located in this section), engine, arrestor hook, brake chute housing, RF-4E, RF-4C, RF-4EJ, RF-4E/F, RF-4E/F ordnance, Republic of Korea Air Force, QF-4E drone, and finally, Action!! Certainly enough material is presented here, to satisfy even the most ardent Phantom Phanatic.

The myriad photos obviously form the backbone of this book, and for me, this is a true blessing, as I can never seem to get enough details, and this book certainly has them in great abundance.

Even if you have just a passing interest in the big Phantom (or fighter aircraft in general), you can’t go wrong with the purchase of this book. You may just become a fan.


On a scale of 1 to 10, I’d rate this book as a solid 10, no question about it. Topping out at a whopping 194 pages of Rhino glory, it's just packed wall-to-wall with details, details, and more details, and is therefore highly recommended.

(Several additional volumes; F/A-18 Hornet, A-4 Skyhawk, MiG-31, will definitely be added to my ever growing book collection, and that can't happen soon enough, as far as I'm concerned.)

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