Raising the
Red Banner
The Pictorial History of the Stalin's Fleet 1920-1945
by Vladimir Yakubov and Richard Worth

reviewed by Timothy Dike

The Russian Navy has always been somewhat of a mystery to me. There has been little published about it's development and build up to what it is today. You could always pick up bits and pieces from different books. But now thanks to Vladimir Yakubov and Richard Worth we now have a nice overview of Soviet Naval ships during the forming years up to the end of the second world war. 
The book covers all kinds of ships, many that I never knew existed. Each class of ships are featured in their chapters filled with rare photos with informative captions. The photo quality is not the best, but there are a wide variety of them. Besides the capital ships, there is good coverage of the submarine force as these were an important part of the Soviet fleet. Gunboats, minelayers, auxiliary vessels and all kinds of makeshift warships pressed into service to fight off the German offensive into Russia. 
One of the most fascinating things in the book is the coverage of the captured war prize ships such as the Talin (ex Lutzow), and the Kerch (ex Duca D'Aosta).  Also worthy of note are the ships loaned to the Russians by the Allies such as the British battleship Royal Sovereign and the American light cruiser Milwaukee. 


It is great to finally have a good look at how the Stalin's navy came to be. This book is a must have for the Russian Navy buff. It provides a great overview of the navy as it developed under Stalin. Hopefully we will be treated to a follow up book covering the post ww2 cold war years in the near future. Finally it is great to see a couple of ModelWarshippers collaborating to bring us great reference books. 

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