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  1. USS Astoria Kagero Top Drawings The USS Astoria (CL/CA-34) was the lead ship of the Astoria-class of heavy cruisers (later renamed the New Orleans-class) of the United States Navy that participated in both the Battle of the Coral Sea and the Battle of Midway, but was then sunk in August 1942, at the Battle of Savo Island. Kagero have just released this book in their Top Drawing series. The softback book has just two pages containing the history and specifications of the Astoria, with a further fifteen pages of line drawings covering the whole ship from stem to stern. Each sheet contains detailed drawings of various parts of the ships structure, weapons systems, radars, aircraft and other, smaller parts. Each drawing is beautifully done with some fine detail that would normally have been missed in other titles. The drawings have obviously been done from some excellent references which have resulted in a very useful book for the detail addict. Most the drawings are in 1:200 scale with a few in 1:50 for larger detail information, making it perfect for those contemplating a scratchbuild, or super detailing the Trumpeter 1:700 kit. Also included with the book are two A2 sheets of plans. The first sheet has on one side a three view of the ships as she was in 1934, while on the other side is another three view, but as she was in 1942. The second sheet contains views of the hull, main and upper decks and a side view with annotations on where the armament was located, on the reverse side is yet another three view of the ship as she was in 1942, but in full colour. Conclusion While this is a rather slim tome, it is still a useful reference book to have in the library. It is certainly an interesting subject to choose, especially as most of the class were either sunk or damaged during the battle of Savo Island. While there isn’t currently a kit available in my favoured scale, I’m sure it will be useful for those with the Trumpeter kit. Review sample courtesy of
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