Paperback: 256 pages
Publisher: Skyhorse Publishing (October 20, 2015)
Product Dimensions: 8.4 x 0.7 x 10.9 inches
Shipping Weight: 12.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
Average Customer Review: 3.3 out of 5 stars See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
Best Sellers Rank: #1,255,349 in Books (See Top 100 in Books) #57 in Books > History > Military > Weapons & Warfare > Conventional > Firearms #439 in Books > Crafts, Hobbies & Home > Antiques & Collectibles > Firearms & Weapons > Firearms #1061 in Books > Sports & Outdoors > Hunting & Fishing > Shooting
I was excited when I read the preview for this book, excited when I received it and saw the table of contents, and pleased when I initially thumbed through it (many pictures of some wonderful subjects, although often the newer pictures of cased guns were not taken with enough light to see details), but once I started reading the text, my excitement turned to disappointment.My impression is that the author knows guns, but doesn't know fine guns well enough to write such an ambitious treatise. Sure there is some good information, but nothing new or more complete for double gun aficionados. The same information is available in other better written books. "Fine Shotguns" is full of opinions, strange segues (in the section on pairs and garnitures, the author tells us that his dentist ordered two different pairs of guns, and that had he requested it, the manufacturer would have gladly supplied two sets of three), and constant name-dropping . . . to the point where you are rolling your eyes, and the text gets awkward (the author mentions seven or eight different people by name on page 159).Although many manufacturers are listed as important, the vast majority of the book concentrates on only a small group of products that the author seems devoted to.If you're like me and you just have to buy every book that comes out on double guns, go ahead, there are enough interesting photos of the manufacturing process to justify it, but if you're smarter about your money, take a pass or wait until the price comes down to reflect the quality.
This book covers a lot of ground but it's quite shallow. If the reader knows little about the subject then it worth buying as long as it's just considered as a starting point. For someone with a bit more experience it's very disappointing.Many of the illustrations are far too dark. It's so frequent that I think the error could be with the printer rather than the original photographer.
I like John Taylor and read many of his writings in other periodicals. I was excited to buy the book and read it hoping that like in every one of my reads I can learn something new. It started okay but then became more and more mediocre as I progressed. I don't like writing any kind of poor review for any gun book because I know the work the author has to go to write and the sacrifices required but there are a few points that jumped out at me worth mentioning:Photography is not very good, dark pictures, lack detail and in a few cases not germane to the text...Photoshop would have helped immenselyThe author repeats numerous examples and situations throughout the text. It is okay to give an example and then refer to it later but not repeat the same thing...there were at least 5-6 examples of this in my readI'm not sure the chapter flow made sense in terms of subjects and in some cases there was not enough detail or missed topics...for example no mention of Fausti in the O Italia chapter. Though they are not know for their high grade shotguns they are major players in the Italian market and growing respectable over time.I respect Mr. Taylor and I believe he has an immense knowledge of shotguns and their uses and functionality but would like to see him spend a bit more time in organizing and reviewing his work before publishing....still having said what I have I will continue to buy his books and read his writings.
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