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Irish Army Vehicles: Transport and Armour since 1922

by Karl Martin

(published by the author, 2002); 152 pages; 35 Euros.

Dubliner Karl Martin's lifelong interest in military matters has resulted in the only book, so far as I know, to deal comprehensively with Irish armour
and softskins. Consider this book a kind of follow-up to his critically praised booklet, Irish Army Armoured Cars, published in 1983.

Aimed squarely at the modellers, wargamer and military enthusiast, this hardcover offering includes more than 400 photos and drawings. Most of
the photos are in black in white, though there is a four-page colour section. All the photos are captioned. Short essays describe how and why each vehicle was introduced. Technical data is also listed.

The book begins with a look at the armoured cars of the 1922 Irish Civil War and concludes with the army's newly acquired LAV IIIs. In between, we are treated to Churchills, Comets, Landrovers and a host of more obscure
vehicles. Even civilian buses, vans and station wagons used by the Irish Army are included.

With so much ground to cover, there obviously isn't room for extensive coverage of any one vehicle. Martin sensibly allocates more space to
the significant vehicles. Many of the photos are "in action." Others are
formal portraits, as it were. A few detailed, close-up shots or interior photos are also included.

If you're interested in Irish armour and softskins, this is obviously an essential reference work. Martin's essays are also useful for anyone wanting to learn more about the history of the Irish Army.

Paul Fraser