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Thursday, September 27, 2007

Unleash Hell

Unleash Hell (War Picture Library Collection No.1) was released by Prion (an imprint of Carlton Books) in September 2007. The book is available from Amazon.co.uk at a hefty discount, as is its companion Death or Glory.

Contents

Fight Back to Dunkirk (WPL 1, Sep 1958), Art: Nevio Zeccara
The Crowded Sky (WPL 56, Jul 1960), Art: Nevio Zeccara
Action Stations (WPL 3, Oct 1958), Art: Renzo Calegari/(D'Ami studio)
Umbrella in the Sky (WPL 54, Jun 1960), Art: Luis Ramos
Crash Call (WPL 53, Jun 1960), Art: Gino D'Antonio
The Iron Fist (WPL 25, Sep 1959), Art: Hugo Pratt
Lone Commando (WPL 36, Feb 1960), Art: Jorge Moliterni
The Black Ace (WPL 141, Apr 1962), Art: Nevio Zeccara
Air Commando (WPL 52, Jun 1960), Art: Annibale Casabianca
Fire Power (WPL 129, Jan 1962), Art: Nevio Zeccara
The Red Devils (WPL 7, Dec 1958), Art: Gino D'Antonio
Task Force (WPL 66, Sep 1960), Art: Annibale Casabianca

Scriptwriters in this volume include Val Holding (later the editor of Eagle; 3, 7, 25), Willie Patterson (writer of the Jeff Hawke strip; 56), E. Evans, revised by Willie Patterson (36), Roger P. Clegg (52, 66, 129), David Satherley (53). Issue 141 was probably by A. Carney Allan.

Synopsis


In all its grim glory, the Second World War is brought to life in 12 of the grittiest war dramas ever committed to paper. "War Picture Library" was the daddy of them all - the first pocket library and for many fans, the best. The conflict that engulfed Europe forced ordinary men to give up their safe, happy lives and fight for freedom against an enemy who had been preparing for war for years. Debuting in 1958, "War Picture Library" celebrated the heroic actions of the Allies as they fought back on land, at sea and in the air. No theatre of conflict was ignored. Written by authors who had themselves seen combat, from the baking deserts of Africa to the steaming jungles of the Far East, these complete stories gave youngsters growing up in the years after the war an answer to the question, "What did you do in the war, daddy?" Gathered here is some of the most striking war art ever produced, reproduced 25 per cent bigger than the originals so you can feel every bullet hit, every crashing wave and every nerve shattering explosion. This is military history as you've never read it before.

Promotional material

Reviews

"This handsome looking book clad in covers with punchy graphics and elements of some of the original cover paintings, is in many ways superior to the Commando collections. The Commando collections are primarily dominated by stories that appeared from the 1970s onwards, they're earlier and infinitely more lurid stories are conspicuous by their abscence. Not so with Holland's selection. He adroitly goes for the earliest issues which were by and large written by men who had direct and (self evidently} fairly recent experience of active service during the Second World War, consequently the stories are much more non PC, "Huns" and "Japs" are a ruthless enemy to be despatched with cold efficiency and there's not an awful lot of agonising on either side over the dehumanising effect of war, these guys mean business and the stories have a consequential drive and dynamic that make reading this collection a really vivid and engaging experience.
"The artwork is similarly powerful and throws you right into the streets of war torn Arnhem, the fetid jungles of Burma, the E-Boat infested water of the English Channel or the flak torn skies over the Ruhr. With the talents of superb draughtsmen such as Gino D'Antonio, Hugo Pratt and Jorge Moliterni the feeling that you are there as you read these stories has never been bettered." -- Amazon.co.uk.

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