P-51 Mustang: Seventy-Five Years of America’s Most Famous Warbird
P-51 Mustang: Seventy-Five Years of America’s Most Famous Warbird, Cory Graff, 2015, ISBN 9780760348598, 224 pp., 140 color and 103 b/w images
Cory Graff’s latest book is gorgeous from cover to cover beginning with the embossed as well as artistically laid out front cover. P-51 Mustang continues between the covers with historical and current photos of Mustangs during their service history through the Korean War as well as today.Graff’s writing tells the tale of Mustang variants and service history though not too technically and spiced with anecdotes from posters to model kits—just enough for demonstrating how deep in Americana the Mustang has become.
The exotic variants such as the Twin Mustang and Cavalier are in the book as well. Graff also has a deep understanding of the many mission profiles Mustang pilots flew (e.g., fighter, attack, recce) as well as long flights (part of the P-51’s supremacy was its long range)—he takes care to note, as an example, that the P-51 had a relief tube but with no explanation of its use in the manual. This is how well Graff gives the reader the context of the times, what it was like to be there whether it was blue skies, mud and slush, or frozen ground.
Get this book for Graff’s research, he is the military aviation historian with the Flying Heritage Collection, and especially for the images (from several sources) which range from those shot during the moment by service personnel to professional aviation photography.
Readers will welcome this book whether it is their first book on the P-51 or an addition to their Mustang section in their library. It sits as well on a coffee table as it does on a shelf due to its high production values and Graff’s skills.
As is the publishing custom, Zenith Press provided a copy of P-51 Mustang: Seventy-Five Years of America’s Most Famous Warbird for an objective review.