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It's the first time the Anatomy of the Ship has joined our Big Reveal. Having origins in the 1980s with Conway Maritime Press/Conway Publishing, the successful series has now joined the ranks of Osprey. Below are two books in the series that will be published under the Osprey Publishing name next year, and we are sure they'll delight all naval warfare fans.

Let us know your thoughts below!


USS Iowa (BB-61) was the lead ship in one of the most famous classes of battleships ever commissioned into the US Navy. Transferred to the Pacific Fleet in 1944, the Iowa first fired her guns in anger in the Marshall Islands campaign, and sunk her first enemy ship, the Katori. The Iowa went on to serve across several pivotal Pacific War campaigns, including at the battles of the Philippine Sea and Leyte Gulf. It ended the war spending several months bombarding the Japanese Home Islands before the surrender in August 1945.

After taking part in the Korea War, the Iowa was decommissioned in 1958, before being briefly reactivated in the 1980s as part of President Reagan’s 600-Ship Navy Plan.

ANT: USS Kidd (Fletcher class destroyer)

USS Kidd (DD-661) was launched 28 February 1943 and served in the Pacific from August 1943 until the end of the war, taking part in operations in the Marshall Islands, the Marianas campaign, and the Philippines. In early 1945 she joined Task Force 58 (TF 58) for the invasion of Okinawa. After service in the Korean War as part of Task Force 77 she alternated West Pacific cruises with operations on the West Coast. She has been docked at Baton Rouge since 23 May 1982, when she was transferred to the Louisiana Naval War Memorial Commission and is now on public view there as a museum vessel. Never modernized, USS Kidd is the only destroyer to retain its World War II appearance.

Post Comments

David Hale posted on 9 Sep 2018 20:48:54
Thanks for the updates, that's nice to know that Osprey have picked up the baton for this series. I know that the volumes I do have are excellent sources of information, so will look forward to Osprey continuing the good work.
Paintybeard posted on 7 Sep 2018 19:20:39
Oh, and I'm glad to see you are still lurking, KenA
Paintybeard posted on 7 Sep 2018 17:54:22
Thank you to everyone for lightening my darkness.
KenA posted on 7 Sep 2018 15:27:38
Just by way of explanation, the Anatomy of the Ship series was published in the UK by Conway since the early 1980's and republished in the US by the Naval Institute Press. About four years ago Conway was acquired by Bloomsbury and so Conway became an imprint of Bloomsbury similar to what Osprey is.

It would appear that some rationalisation of Bloomsbury’s publishing arrangements has occurred and that naval and other military titles previously published by Conway have been transferred to Osprey (e.g. Warship and Anatomy of the Ship) so that the Bloomsbury’s Group’s military history publishing is “all under the one roof”, as it were, at Osprey. At least, that is my understanding. Correct me if I have it wrong.

Some information about the series can be gained from a somewhat dated article from Wikipedia, which provides a little information about the series and the books’ content and gives a list of ships covered in the series (though not up-to-date).

Most of these books are now out of print and can only be picked up used or second hand (check out Amazon or ABEBooks). Incidentally, not all of these books are 128 pages. Some are substantially longer than that.

Five are still available for sale on the Bloomsbury website. Those interested in pdf versions of the edition covering Yamato and Musashi and that covering the Mary Rose might well find it worthwhile having a look. There are 10 percent discounts (not much I admit) on the Mary Rose, Hood (PB only, though HB is available at full price), Dreadnought (PB), and Campbeltown (HB). You will, of course, need to factor in any delivery charges. Hope this helps.
Mark Lardas posted on 7 Sep 2018 13:01:16
I should make it clear I use the illustrations from AotS books for the Artist's briefs. It is a great source of detail for that. Want to show an artist how to rig a topsail? Go to an Anatomy of the Ship book. Want to show a British 18pdr smoothbore and illustrate the difference between it an American 12pdr. Again AotS. It is one of sources for accurate detail of that type.
Mark Lardas posted on 7 Sep 2018 11:50:12
Anatomy of the Ship is what New Vanguard authors use to provide graphic illustrations for their ship books. (For that matter, so do Duel and Campaign authors - at least this one.) It is *the* ultimate guide to what a ship and its components look like.

It is *not* a standard Osprey offering. It is a large-format, 128 page book, printed on archival paper. I have half a bookshelf filled with them, some of which I have owned for over 30 years, and all of which I treasure.

For 20th century types Iowa has been a big gap in the series. There have been five previous books featuring battleships - 2 British, 2 Japanese, 1 German, and 0 United States.
PAUL W posted on 7 Sep 2018 08:01:14
Painty there is already Battleships Yamato and Musashi published by osprey in this series. I also thought The Battleship Bismarck was due out this month. I have the Battleships Yamato and Musashi and it is a heavily illustrated book of what the ship looked like.
PAUL W posted on 6 Sep 2018 17:30:10
Wasn't aware this was actually a series but will give it a look. The Yamato book was good. Bit surprised however that after weapon there was 5 reveals left but after this we're down to 2! Have we lost 2 reveals / serries in a couple of days?
David Hale posted on 6 Sep 2018 13:09:42
Are these new books or reprints from the original series?
Paintybeard posted on 6 Sep 2018 12:28:23
Frustratingly this tells us very little about what these books will concentrate on. Construction details and in service modifications? Service history? Life on Board.

And 2 American ships to start the series off. Utterly predictable.

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