Author: Tony Blackman
Illustrations: multiple colour photos
Publisher: Grub Street Publishing
The initial chapters deal with the history and development of the ASW program within the RAF, identifying the various unique aspects and technologies associated with sub-hunting. This includes the development of acoustics, passive and active sonobuoys and radar systems. He follows this with a detailed discussion of the Nimrod MR2 which was the primary configuration of the Nimrod for a majority of its operational life. His detailed description of the roles of the different flight stations, weapons systems, acoustical equipment and aircraft layout, all replete with photographs, are quite in depth and technical. ASW is a very complicated skill and the language is often steeped with acronyms and data that is completely foreign to the casual reader; Blackman assumes this and goes to great lengths to compensate for this.
Overall, this book is an interesting read relating the history of a storied aircraft. The narrative is quite dry and stilted in places, especially within the ‘Nimrod 101’ chapters where he relates the details of equipment, capabilities and crewing of the different variants of the Nimrod. Significant portions of these sections feel like it they are a reiteration of a basic technical manual. He does much better when relating the operational history and usage of the Nimrod within the Cold War and the Falkland Islands conflict. Production value of the book is high and the numerous photographs are a plus. This book is aimed more towards the aviation enthusiast as opposed to the casual reader of aviation history and will be quite enjoyed by that target audience.