A shot of an actual hardbound edition of the new book, sitting on my kitchen table, which, for once, is not covered in piles of Barracuda Studios related stuff!
Once again, its been too long since I last blogged. The 4 new 1/32nd scale P-51 sets have kept me away while I concentrated on getting them finished and released. Going to try and do better at keeping up with this blog. It's one of my New Year's resolutions for 2012. And we all know how well THAT works! :-)
The really great news is that Thunderbolts of the Hell Hawks has finished printing, has been delivered to the docks in Shenzhen, and is steaming its way to Port Oakland, California as I write this. It is due to land on March 4th. That does not mean that it will be ready for sale on the 5th, however. It has to go through unloading, Customs inspection, all sorts of clearance paperwork, then shipped to a holding facility. If all goes well, we should have it within a week of that date. If Customs flags it for inspection, add a week.
Pre-sales will begin once the ship has landed and the cargo unloaded. We need to know that the product has arrived and is in good condition before we release it for pre-sales. Last thing we want is to disappoint anyone. We will let you know when pre-sales are about to begin.
Note there are 3 versions: A softbound edition, a hardbound and dust jacketed edition, and a very limited run book plated, hardbound, dust jacketed version that is signed by three pilots (one from each Fighter Squadron in the 365th FG) as well as by the three authors. Here is a link to the website page for the book.
The signed edition is expensive, but is extremely limited in numbers. There are only 365 available, and when they are gone, they are gone. Why 365? Think about it.... hmmmm.
This book is no weekend read. It is a book to be absorbed and savored. Unique among books of its kind, every pilot in every photo is identified by name. 21 surviving Hell Hawk pilots are still with us and have contributed hugely to making this book a rare and very complete look at a 9th Air Force P-47 unit in the final year of the war in Europe.
Note the very large size that many of the never before published photos are printed. Detailed captions identify each pilot and many of the crew. Over 550 photos detail every aspect of life in the 365th.
There are 98 color profiles of Thunderbolts from the 365th. Only 2 of these aircraft have ever been seen before! That makes 96 NEW airplanes. Every single airplane is linked to a pilot, and 44 of these are accompanied by a few paragraphs of history and background on the subject.
Yes, decals to support this book will be coming soon in all 3 scales. These will be special release decals, featuring numerous subjects and including some very cool extras never offered before (As far as I know) on an airplane decal sheet. Both Razorbacks and Bubbletops in OD/NG and natural metal finishes will be included. A mix of aces, leaders and colorful noseart will be featured. These sheets will follow in a few weeks after the release of the book.
I could go on about this amazing book that Don Barnes has created, but I will leave it at that for now. Suffice to say that it will be worth the wait. More to come.
Happy modelling! Roy