American Battleships by Max Newhart
Published by Pictorial History Publications
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110 pages; retail price $9.95
This volume is both a technical and brief history survey of every battleship built, or proposed to be built, by the United States Navy. Includes numerous photos for each vessel, plus a nice overall operations history of the American battleship. Thorough and concise.
Battleship by H. P. Willmott
Published by Cassell Books 2002
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352 pages; retail price $29.95
This is a general history of the battleship, from the early dreadnought days through the deployment of the USS Missouri in the first Persian Gulf war. Willmott provides his insights and analysis to make a thorough history. The ideas and the efforts to make battleships conform to naval strategy (which often did not happen the way planned) makes for excellent recounting of the development of the supreme "capital ship."
Pearl Harbor by H, P. Willmott
Published by Cassell
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224 pages; $29.95 retail; $3.95 used
Though not specifically about battleships, Willmott covers the theories about battleships held dear by the Japanese Navy and the United States Navy which made the attack on Pearl Harbor a necessity from a strategic viewpoint. Includes an analysis of the outcome of the attack and how it affected naval doctrines for the two powers, especially in regards to the ideas built upon the dominance of the battleship within attack fleets, and how those ideas were steadily denuded by air power and the simple lack of opportunity for battleships to bring their heavy guns into sea battles.
The Dreadnoughts by David Howarth
Published by Time-Life Books 1979
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175 pages; $2.25 used copies
This book begins with the huge British naval parade off Spithead in 1897, and covers the development and changes to capital ship concepts through the equally huge naval battle at Jutland in 1916 between Germany and England. Charts, line drawings and hundreds of photographs, plus Howarths' straight-forward, highly readable text. Howarth describes the personalities that drove the push for heavier guns and armor, and the pressures in Germany that brought on the naval race between Kaiser Wilhelm II and his family relations in England. Though weighted toward the British navy, Howarth also includes developments among the navies of United States, Japan, Italy and France.