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Although this book may provide a comprehensive analysis of the role that air power has played in military conflicts over the past century, but in the other hand I find it so stuffed with some an necessary details, instead of that it focused on one side than the other. True it comprised essays penned by a global cadre of leading military experts, but it would not fit in this book, it should be put in two parts instead of one huge stuffed book. The concluding section however offers wider perspectives by focusing on air and space power in both unconventional and conventional warfare from 1913 to the present. Also although some might find it a positive aspect of the book is that it wasn't written by one or two writers; I find it a negative move but not so badly. In summary: as you read through the book you gain an understanding of how certain aspects of air power (technical, logistical, strategy or tactical) developed over a number of conflicts. This book is good for the normal readers who want to discover the aerial warfare history with an interest or viewpoint on the past, present or future of air power.
Reviewed in the United States on February 24, 2019
The majority of negative reviews thus far have had the following theme: boring, difficult to read, long. While I do not agree with the first two, it is indeed long. I do not find that a negative. Air Power theory is complicated. Although numerous articles in a variety of air power or technology magazines want you to believe there is a one size fits all takeaway regarding the success of air power, the truth is not that simple. Olsen has compiled some very interesting essays that discuss the spectrum of air power success. I agree that this book will not be completed in one sitting. In fact, it may take several to many sittings. However, it is worth your time if you desire a solid grasp on contemporary air power theory and the history behind it.
Reviewed in the United States on November 26, 2011
This is an outstanding text on the history of air warfare providing very intriguing details of air power as a weapon of war. The author has gone through great lengths to detail the origins of flight inventions and the consequent impact on success or defeat on the battlefield.
It is too bad that Olson chose Van Doren to do the reading in this audio presentation. Van Doren's melodramatic delivery detracts from the scholarly tone of the book, and his inability to pronounce French, Italian, and German names, places, and nouns, presents this embarrassing performance which sent me to purchase the book for quiet reading.
I am reviewing the audible version. How can a topic so interesting, exciting and adventurous be told in such a bland and boring manner? The author fails to detail innovations, aircraft specifics, inventions and the developmental methods that one would hope to hear in such a book. Rather the Author reviews a timeline and with little else. The content is long, bland and quite unthrilling. Am I wrong for wanting a little detail (aircraft innovation) and adventure in such a topic?