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On original release in 2012, Eagles of the Southern Sky was hailed worldwide as the first detailed history of a Japanese air unit to be published anywhere. It has since been translated into Japanese.
The Imperial Japanese Tainan Naval Air Group enjoyed the highest prestige of any Japanese aerial unit in the Second World War. It was assigned to New Guinea in April 1942, confident of victory, having already conquered the Philippines and Netherlands East Indies. However, by mid-November 1942 only eighteen pilots from the original cadre sailed home from Rabaul, marking the end of an era. Eight months of combat had destroyed the unit, and no Air Group had fought more relentlessly than the Tainan did in New Guinea.
Eagles of the Southern Sky outlines the definitive history of this flagship unit in New Guinea, sourcing material from all sides. The book features meticulous color profiles of every aircraft type the Tainan operated, complemented by equally detailed photos of RAAF and USAAF aircraft against which it fought. Along with previously unpublished photos and artwork, the unit's remarkable history highlights the unique nature of the deadly terrain and harsh climate over which it contested New Guinea skies.
All major battles have been defined, in many cases matching pilot to pilot. Thus, for the first time we can account for the actions of friend and foe alike. The level of detail sets a new benchmark in the English language for the study of a Japanese aerial unit.