Title:

PZL P.23/43 Karas

Author:

Thomasz J. Kopanski

Publisher

Stratus for Mushroom Models Publications

Price

9.99  MSRP

Reviewer:

Scott Van Aken

Notes: #81016   ISBN 83-89450-03-8

Without a doubt, these books put out by  Mushroom Models Magazine fill a lot of gaps for modelers and enthusiasts alike. This particular edition on the PZL P.23 Karas is no exception and the first in their 'Orange' series that combines the aspects of the Red (history) and Yellow (aircraft monograph) series into one book. This aircraft is from the mid-1930s that was developed as a light bomber and reconnaissance aircraft. As with most new planes, there were teething troubles, and the initial P.23A aircraft were all relegated to training units. The definitive P.23B was built in fairly large numbers and equipped a number of light bomber and recce squadrons.

A re-engined version, the P.43, was built for Bulgaria, who used the aircraft in their fight against the Soviets. Several were also used by the Romanians, but those were planes flown to Romania by Polish units after the Soviets invaded Poland in mid-September of 1939. The Romanians also used them against the Soviets when they joined the Germans in their war against Russia in 1941.

The Poles lost a huge number of P.23s during their brief, but valiant struggle against the Luftwaffe. The aircraft was basically un-armored and its use as a low-level bomber, a role for which it was not designed, meant that a large number of them were brought down by light arms from ground forces.

In addition to the full development of the aircraft, this book also gives a blow by blow account of operations by every Polish AF unit that flew the plane, a real plus to the reader. There is the usual excellent set of drawings that accompany other Mushroom Models Magazine Publications and a superb set of profiles that cover every unit to fly the aircraft.

Since there is no extant Karas, the book relies on period photographs and images from the technical manuals to give the reader a look at the salient features of the P.23.

Overall, another superb book by the folks at MMMP and one that you really should pick up if you have any interest in the type or the early days of WWII.

Review book courtesy of Mushroom Models Publications.

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