By Paul Garson
Published by Amberley ISBN: 978-1-4456-7236-6 128 pages paperback. Available from: John Reed Book Distribution (02) 4997 2936. RRP: $44.95 plus $5.00 postage Australia wide. www.johnreedbooks.com.au
Los Angeles-based Paul Garson should be a familiar name to OBA readers, through his numerous contributions on the Californian classic scene, and his particular passion, the role of motorcycles in the military. This book is primarily concerned with German wartime motorcycles and is illustrated with many marvellous photographs from the author’s private collection. In the main, these photos were taken by ordinary German soldiers with their own cameras and show a side of the conflicts not usually depicted. Motorcycles were first used by the German military in 1904 – 14 NSU models used for Imperial Manoeuvres – and in the Second World War, the country was the largest user of motorcycles of all the combatant nations, as couriers, for reconnaissance, for medical evacuation, as assault vehicles and even to deliver meals to the front line. The major marques used were BMW, DKW, NSU, Puch, Victoria, and Zündapp, but there are also details of other marques used in various countries – Rene Gillet, IMZ-Ural, and Jawa to name just a few. Paul has put an enormous amount of research into this book, which is basically photographic with extended captions – some a chilling insight into some very grim periods in our history.