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Book Review of

"Camouflage: Modern International Military Patterns"

By Glen Phelan - Dublin, Ireland


Basic Item Information


Camouflage: Modern International Military Patterns

Author, Editor and/or Illustrator

Eric H. Larson


Pen & Sword

ISBN/Stock Number


Number of Pages

Approximately 500  

Number/Type of Photos and/or Illustrations

Approximately 600 color photographs

Text Language


Retail Price



Glen Phelan 

Review Date

August 19, 2022 

Review Summary*

Review Type

Full Read 


Highly Recommended 




Detailed Review

This is one of the most impressive books I’ve had enter my reference library in some time, regarding: visual impact; size; quality; scope. Spoiler alert, skipping ahead to the end, I really like this book. I won’t go into detail on the paragraph length publisher’s note, but I do feel the first half of their first sentence nails it: “A comprehensive, accurate, and academically-supported reference…”. Opinions will always vary on a product, but one thing that can’t be argued with here is the comprehensive nature of this book. So how does it break down?

The author, Eric H. Larson, is a known entity, and has done much work in this field. He has been cited in, and contributed to, many related endeavours on camouflage. Anyone familiar with the topic will be aware of the excellent websites/resources he has been involved with. It’s a large book, almost 490 pages and approximately 29 x 23cm, and almost 4cm thick. He has cleverly organised the book by (several) continents, further broken down into over 400 individual countries and or associated political/paramilitary entities. For example, you have: Georgia and South Ossetia; Sri Lanka and the Tamil Tigers; Moldova and Transnistria. Most importantly, in such a reference book, there are over 600 colour images. The quality of pictures provided is very good indeed, particularly the camouflage ‘swatches’ (for want of a better word), where provided.

Accompanying each section is a country/region overview, giving a basic outline of political and military history that may have influenced the sourcing and creation of particular camouflage uniforms. It is here I would have my only real gripe: in that I find some of it a bit dated. Any book on such subjects, in the rapidly evolving world of military affairs, will soon be out of date, I just consider some dated political/military information on some of the nations covered precedes publication by some time. That said, you are not buying this book for the, otherwise quite well done, brief text associated with each section, but rather the wonderfully collated and presented imagery.

One final word: this is a book very much dedicated to ‘modern’, post 1946, camouflage patterns., And though the term “modern” can be subjective, you will find little or no references of WW2 camouflage here. There are some inferences and imagery with the major nation sections that discuss lineage of camouflage, such as the UK’s Denison smock and the USA’s M1942 ‘Duck Hunter’ pattern, for example. But this is very much a post WW2 work, and it covers that period very, very well. It’s doubtful you will find another such book that covers the scope of topic, regarding the post-World War Two period, as well as this one has.

Highly recommended, to both the scale modeller and military combat uniform enthusiast.

Thanks to Casemate Publishers for the Review Sample.

Copyright: Glen Phelan - August 19, 2022