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Chino (the "Optics Dude")

Chinoís Aviation Library Tour - Non-fiction, military

Chino reports:

"Iíve always had a 'thing' for airplanes.

When I was a kid, I built airplane models, and flew orientation flights with Civil Air Patrol. In the last few years, Iíve had flight sims, web sites, internet friends who share my enthusiasm for aviation, air shows, museums, and now at last, real flying lessons. But in between, there were a lot of years when I could only get my aviation 'fix' from books - so I built up quite a library (it doesnít help that Iíve also always had a 'thing' for books).

This is a report on a few of my favorite non-fiction military aviation books (Iíll follow it up later with a report on general flying and flight instruction books). Iím not that good at being brief, but Iíll try. Iíve had some of these books for many years, and many of them came from bargain bins, so some are certainly out of print. It doesnít hurt to check with Amazon via the links. In any case they can search for out of print books for you.

It occurs to me that with all this reading, I ought to be an outstanding sim and real-life pilot by now, but Iím not. Books are great, but reading obviously isnít the same as doing!

Book Reviews

The books are linked here:

  • Flight of Passage by Rinker Buck
  • Daughter of the Air
  • The Mighty Eighth (The air war in Europe as told by the men who fought it) by Gerald Astor
  • B-24 Mitchell Units of the Fifteenth Air Force by Robert F. Dorr
  • Fire in the Sky: The Air War in the South Pacific by Eric M. Bergerud
  • War in the Air (True accounts of the 20th Centuryís most dramatic air battles) by Stephen Coonts
  • Aircraft versus Aircraft (The illustrated story of fighter pilot combat from 1914 to the present day)
  • The Wright Brothers: How they invented the Airplane
  • GABBY: A Fighter Pilotís Life by Francis Gabreski and Carl Molesworth
  • Bogeys and Bandits: The Making of a Fighter Pilot by Robert Gandt
  • America in the Air War by Edward Jablonksi
  • Janeís How to Fly and Fight in the F/A-18 Hornet
  • Vipers in the Storm: Diary of a Gulf War Fighter Pilot
  • Air Warriors: The Inside Story of the Making of a Navy Pilot
  • Hunters in the Sky (Fighter Aces of WW II) by James R. Whelan