Norman Friedman: my favorite (almost) naval author


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Norman Friedman: my favorite (almost) naval author

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Feb 28, 2007, 1:22pm

Norman Friedman has written extensively on warship design and naval affairs. U.S. Battleships : an illustrated design history and Battleship Design and Development, 1905-1945 are personal favorites along with Modern Warship : Design and Development. In fact all the illustrated design histories (aircraft carriers, amphibious ships, cruisers, destroyers, small combatants, submarines) are excellent. His photo captions are often more informative than paragraphs of text by other authors. I particularly enjoy his descriptions of the paths taken and not taken by designers leading to the ships actually built.

Who are the favorite authors here amongst the warship dilettante?

Mar 20, 2007, 7:20pm

It is hard to pick a favorite, but if forced I would have to say Norman Polmar.

I also enjoyed the books by Adm. Charles Lockwood - they are a little dated, but since he was SUBPAC during most of the war, he knows what he is talking about.

I also have Friedman's two volume set on submarine design, which is very good.

Mar 20, 2007, 10:16pm

I'll grant Polmar does do the 'occasional' good book (OK, several). I've read Cold War submarines: the Design and Construction of U.S. and Soviet Submarines and enjoyed it. However Friedman's Submarine Design and Development is more at the basic design orientation level which is good for the layman such as myself.

Mar 22, 2007, 8:29am

I think Polmar is sort of fading, or has become more of a general commentator on security issues. Friedman does stands as our leading writer on warships per se.

I'm sort of looking forward to the man who does for Soviet warships what Yefim Gordon has done for Soviet warplanes.