Davis Military Books

Ken Davis, Markham, ON

I have accumulated a large collection of military, aviation and naval books along with civil aviation books, photos and other documents over the years. I am now downsizing my collection and have posted a sampling of them for this show. You can check out my website for a full listing of my collection.


Contact Dealer

(416) 522-6287



22 David Gohn Circle
Markham, ON L6E1A7

1. Rule Britannia – the Navy in the Present War

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Item Description: 1st. ed. 1941. This book describes the activities of the Royal Navy in WW 2 primarily for the British public. The author explains the work of the Home Fleet and the roles of the capital ships, cruisers, destroyers and other smaller vessels. The duties of various personnel are also covered. The author confidently states that “should there be any craven doubts victory will be won…….(this) should dispel them”. Photos and illustrations. Hardbound with d/j. D/j has some losses, but book in excellent condition.

2. Ten Commando 1942-1945

Item Price: $30

Item Description: 1st. ed. 1987. The interesting story of 10 Commando, a unit that still has a shroud of secrecy around it. Composed entirely of men from occupied countries under Nazi occupation, including from Germany itself. Because of that fact, they were all at greater risk of being executed if captured than their British counterparts. This book covers their exploits for the first time. Photos. Hardbound with d/j. Excellent condition.

3. D-Day Dodgers – the Canadians in Italy, 1943-1945

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Item Description: 1st, ed, 1991. The Italian campaign marked the first time Canadian troops had gone into combat en masse since the outbreak of war. The Canadians distinguished themselves in a hard slogging series of battles but during the last few months of the campaign, focus had shifted to Normandy. It was Lady Astor who notoriously said all the troops in Italy were getting off lightly ‘dodging D-Day’ which left a bitter taste in all the Allies soldiers mouths and led to the famous ditty “We’re the D-Day Dodgers”. The role and battles of the Canadians are fully described. Photos and maps. Hardbound with d/j. Near mint condition.

4. The Crucible of War – Western Desert 1941

Item Price: $25

Item Description:  1st. ed. 1980. A full account of the early battles in North Africa with the destruction of a large Italian army at the hands of a small British force to the arrival of Rommel and the Afrika Korps and a reversal of fortunes. This book concludes with the Crusader battles that finally relieved the garrison at Tobruk but failed to destroy Rommel, the original objective. The year 1942 ended in stalemate again with bigger battles to follow. Photos and maps. Hardbound with d/j. Excellent condition

5. The Shield of David – An Illustrated History of the Israeli Air Force

Item Price: $20

Item Description: 1st. ed. 1978. From humble beginnings and makeshift warplanes in 1948, the Israeli Air Force has grown into one of the most formidable and highly trained fighting forces in the world. This book covers every type of aircraft flown by the Chel Ha’Avir up to the time of writing. Photos. Hardbound with d/j. Excellent condition.

6. Hitler’s Mediterranean Gamble – North African & Mediterranean Campaigns of WW2

Item Price: $40

Item Description: 1st. ed. 2004. This documents one of the greatest gambles of WW 2 of Germany engaging the Allies in the Mediterranean. Hitler decided to come to the aid of his struggling ally, the Italians. Since his true objectives were northern Europe and Russia he had much to lose and little to gain. For the British, the Med was a lifeline and a key strategic focus. Efforts to gain control in the Med led to German forces steadily being drawn away from Russia effectively creating a second front. The author argues this front provided a perfect training ground for the Americans and other Allied troops who would eventually fight in Normandy. By engaging in the Mediterranean, Hitler sowed the seeds of his own defeat. Photos and maps. Hardbound with d/j. Near mint condition.

7. The Times History of the War, vol. 1 to 4​

Item Price: $100 set

Item Description: 1st. ed. 1914-15. These first 4 volumes (of a total of 22) published by the Times of London document the early battles and political players of all the combatants. The fighting described is still jingoistic and naive with victory just around the corner. Trench warfare is just starting and the horrors that will follow are not imagined. A fascinating look at the early stages of the “Great War”. Many photos and maps including foldouts.
Hardbound with leather spines and corners, gilt lettering. Edged bumped and spines have some scratches and splits. Vol. 2 is missing bottom 1/3 of spine. Contents in good condition in all volumes.

8. Douglas Skyraider​

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Item Description: 1st. ed. 1969. Designed at the end of WW 2 to replace US Navy dive bombers, the specification kept changing and the final design resulted in the Skyraider. Big, rugged, heavily armed, and able to carry a large bomb load it proved itself as the best attack aircraft in Korea. It remained in service well after jet aircraft became the norm and served again in Vietnam, earning respect of its pilots surviving heavy damage and getting home. Lovingly nicknamed SPAD for it’s antique appearance, it is still regarded as one of the best attack aircraft ever. Photos and illustrations. Card covers. small scuffs on spine. Very good condition.

9. Northrup P-61 Black Widow

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Item Description: Revised ed. 1975. The story of the first American designed from the ground up night fighter. The design was developed after observing the British adapt fast twin engine bombers (Boston, Mosquito) for the role. They could carry radar, heavy armament and at least 2 crew members. The P-61 tried to incorporate all these feature. Photos and illustrations. Laminated card covers. Excellent condition

10. The Lost Battle – Crete 1941

Item Price: $25

Item Description: 1st. ed. 1993. The Germans had previous success with airborne troops in Europe and the Crete invasion would use large forces for the first time. Early success was expected by the highly trained troops. However, the Allies despite limited resources, were able to inflict heavy losses on the paratroops with the help of ULTRA for the first time. The Germans eventually gained a foothold and turned the battle, but the German airborne forces were decimated never again played a large role for the remainder of the war. Photos and maps. Hardbound with d/j. Excellent condition.

11. General Patton – A Soldier’s Life

Item Price: $40

Item Description: 1st. ed. 2002. An up to date biography of one of America’s most famous and most complex generals. The author had access to his personal papers and documents so provides a fuller story of the man. A brilliant horseman and cavalryman, he was nonetheless an early supporter and leader of tanks. (Although he never gave up his jodphurs and high leather riding boots). A outstanding tactician, he was also a showman, foul mouthed and was a difficult subordinate. An excellent book full of new information. Photos. Hardbound with d/j. Near mint condition.

12. From Oasis to Italy – War Poems from Africa and Italy 1940-1946

Item Price: $15

Item Description: 1st. ed. 1983. A collection of poetry and letters from soldiers in the Mediterranean and Italy published by the Salamander Oasis Trust. There are also sections of diary entries, drawings and cartoons from the most famous cartoonist in North Africa, JON.
Illustrations, some in colour. Hardbound with d/j. Excellent condition.

13. A Don At War

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Item Description: 1st. ed. 1966. The wartime career of a Greek scholar and archeologist who served as an intelligence officer in Greece, Crete, North Africa, Sicily and Italy. He was senior enough to be in the know, but junior enough to use independent judgement. This book remains a “classic” as a first account of the Mediterranean campaign from an intelligence officers viewpoint and not a general. Hardbound with d/j. Very good condition.

14. Mark of the Lion – the Story of Capt. Charles Upham, V.C. and Bar

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Item Description:Reprint 1987 (original 1962). The remarkable story of a New Zealander who one his first Victoria Cross in Crete when he destroyed a German machine gun next single handed and later an unheard of second VC in North Africa leading an assault on an enemy position. He was wounded and captured during this action and learned of this second VC after the war. He attempted to escape several times and eventually landed in Colditz where the German’s kept the ‘troublesome’ POW’s. A tough man indeed. Photos. Hardbound with d/j. Excellent condition.

15. Mistel – German Composite Aircraft and Operations 1942- 1945

Item Price: $45

Item Description: 1st. ed. 2001. A very detailed study of the German “Mistel” piggyback projects. Initially proposed pre-war as a means of extending the range of passenger aircraft, this concept was adapted to use the unmanned heavier aircraft as a ‘super bomb’ with a massive hollow charge warhead fitted in place of the cockpit and forward part of the airframe. The smaller manned fighter aircraft fitted atop this guided the weapon to the release point and the fighter returned to base. Used in small numbers on the western front most were deployed in Russia in a desperate attempt to halt the Soviet advance. Photos and illustrations. Hardbound with d/j. Near mint condition.

16. Convair B-58

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Item Description: 1st. ed. 1985. The story and development and operational service of the world’s first Mach 2 supersonic bomber. It’s elegant delta wing design and long engine nacelles made it very distinctive. Convair was heavily involved in delta wing designs producing the F-102 and F-106 fighters and this design followed that pattern. Although it had a short service life due to a change in bomber tactics, it continued to be used as a test bed and research aircraft. The author has accumulated photos of virtually every aircraft built in an appendix. A great reference. Photos and illustrations. Lamiated card covers. Excellent condition.

17. The Gurkhas

Item Price: $25

Item Description: 1st. ed. 1965. The Gurkhas, originating in Nepal have served in the British Army for over 150 years. These tough and courageous soldiers have served through every war and campaign since. The author served in Gurkha battalions in WW 2 and his admiration and love of them is evident as he details their history. Photos. Hardbound with d/j. Excellent condition.

18. The Bush Pilots – A Pictorial History of a Canadian Phenomenon

Item Price:  $20

Item Description: 1st. ed. 1990. At the end of WW 1, many of the pilots returned home to Canada and continued to fly and found ways to make a living. Canada’s vast territory, sparse population and remote communities lent itself to being opened up by the airplane where roads were not existent and these young men (and some women) filled a need. The “bush” pilots as they became known brought food, medical supplies, mail and other goods that kept these settlements alive. This lavishly illustrated book brings them to life. Photos. Hardbound with d/j. Near mint condition.

19. Rommel as Military Commander

Item Price: $25

Item Description: 1st. ed. 1968. A fine biography by a noted historian who himself served in North Africa. He covers Rommel’s military career from a highly decorated junior officer in WW1 to leading the Afrika Korps to his greatest successes. A skilled tactician, Rommel often ignored logistical problems and greater strategic issues. Rommel remains one of the great generals of WW 2. Photos and maps. Hardbound with d/j. A dedication in ink on the flyleaf. Otherwise in excellent condition.

20. Jock Lewes – Co-Founder of the SAS

Item Price: $25

Item Description: 1st. ed. 2000. David Stirling is generally credited with founding the SAS, but Lewes was equally involved in organizing the SAS. Lacking military experience, Lewes was a radical thinker and trainer developing novel ways to toughen up the men who would have to think quickly, independently and put up with hardship. He developed the lethal “Lewes bomb” and other devices and tactics. Photos. Hardbound with d/j. Near mint condition.

21. Sixty Years – The RCAF and CF Air Command 1924 – 1984

Item Price:  $45

Item Description: 1st. ed. 1984. A full history of the founding of the Canadian Air Force in 1918 and then Royal Canadian Air Force in 1924 to the date of publication. The bulk of the book deals with WW2 where Canada played a large role in Fighter and Bomber Command. The post war period and the key role in NATO are covered as well. B/w and colour photos throughout. Illustrations and charts. A fine reference. (Signed by author) Hardbound with d/j. Very good condition.

22. Mustang – The Story of the P-51 Fighter

Item Price: $25

Item Description: 1st. ed. 1969. A full and detailed history of one of the most famous and successful fighters of WW 2. Designed and built in a record 65 days, it initially was not wanted either by the British or the US. The company persisted with testing the aircraft with an Allison engine. It was good, but not great. The US wanted a dive bomber so directed the company to modify the aircraft for that role. The aircraft became an attack plane and that might have been the Mustang’s ultimate fate. The British then advanced the idea of fitting a Rolls Royce Merlin engine, and the potential of the design was finally realized. Photos and illustrations throughout. Hardbound with d/j. Excellent condition.