Panzerwaffe Series Book Review


Panzerwaffe Volume One:  The Evolution of the Panzerwaffe to the Fall of Poland 1939

Classic Colours Series

By Rainer Strasheim, John Prigent, Carlos Caballero Jurado, Lucas Molina Franco, and William Russ, edited by John Prigent

Paperback, 96 pages, profusely illustrated, color profiles

Published by Ian Allan Publishing November 2007

Language: English

ISBN-10: 0711032394

ISBN-13: 978-0711032392

Dimensions: 9.0 x 0.4 x 12.0 inches


Panzerwaffe Volume Two: The Campaigns in the West 1940

Classic Colours Series

By Mark Healy, edited by John Prigent

Paperback, 96 pages, profusely illustrated, color profiles

Published by Ian Allan Publishing June 2008

Language: English

ISBN-10: 0711032408

ISBN-13: 978-0711032408

Dimensions: 9.0 x 0.2 x 12.0 inches


This is a review of a series which never was.  Ten volumes were planned, the first two volumes were actually printed.  The subject was and is in demand as evidenced by the continuing popularity of other publications and issuance of new model kits in all the major scales.  If it’s a Panzer it sells, even the what-if napkinwaffe types.

The format is identical to that of the excellent Jagdwaffe series from the same publisher.  96 pages jamb-packed with excellent photographs, beautiful color profiles, and authoritative text.  The Jagdwaffe series ran for 20 volumes with another 15 covering additional Luftwaffe types.  This series had the potential to be just as successful.

Volume one begins with German tank development during the First World War and concludes with the end of the Polish campaign, volume two ends with the fall of France.  The major revelation for me was the camouflage of German armor is shown to be not just the expected overall Panzer Gray but one third of the vehicle surface was painted brown.  The color separation is invisible to my eye in black and white photographs, even when the captions call it out in the book.  I may be coming late to the dance but this is the first time I have encountered this and will have to look into it further.

So why did the series end with the second volume?  It is a mystery to me.  Almost certainly some combination of high production costs and low sales.  I found both volumes at a model show for the princely sum of $10 each and didn’t think twice about snatching them up.  If you can find them pick them up – they are nice books.  I only regret the series stopped at two.