Author: Mel Carpenter.
Reviewed by F. W. Hackley
Frustrated with trying to find a publisher to print and make distribution of his book, Mel Carpenter decided to publish himself, thus allowing his research and full-color illustrations and graphics to remain intact and be available in a timely manner to everyone interested in this subject.
This is surely a labor of love and rarely does one get the opportunity to examine a company in this depth and detail that was involved in such a wide range of commercial and military weapons and munitions. It is also gratifying that a considerable amount of attention is also devoted to the MBA personalities that designed, tested and marketed these unique products.
Mel’s style of writing flows well and is easy to follow as he tells the story of MBA, its people and their interactions with government agencies and the many interesting plans, developments, and projects, both those that were successful and ones that failed often after multiple attempts to satisfy a requirement.
There is something for everyone interested in munitions and weapons in this book, be it collector, historian or researcher with the subjects wide-ranging from small and medium caliber ammunition including pyrotechnics to special devices, weapons, missiles and aircraft ordnance.
The book is spiral bound and organized in a logical manner with 408 pages divided into 26 Chapters, three Appendices, a Bibliography and Index. Mel has solved the dilemma faced by most authors of technical publications, which concerns the presentation of additional information received too late, by adding this with the appropriate illustrations in Chapter 26, keyed to the correct chapter location.
The review of the book would not be complete, without special mention of the numerous full-color illustrations that are such an important part of telling the MBA story. These are very professionally presented throughout the book, thanks to Mel’s meticulous attention to detail with photography and graphics.
This book is a must for anyone interested in munitions and weapons and should remain the final word on this subject for years to come.