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14 Reviews
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Clandestine Radio Operators
As a stealth amateur radio operator, I was thrilled to purchase a copy of this great book. I had seen other books on the subject matter and on nearly every aspect of World War II but this was the book I thought I was searching for. It compliments another book I own entitled, " Wireless for the Warrior", vol.4 (UK) that chronicles the history of clandestine radio...
Published on May 28, 2012 by Michael Davis

versus
3.0 out of 5 stars Artistic certainly, but where are the meat and potatos?
Certainly a beautifully laid out ensemble, though beware. This isn't a manual or in depth study. Artistically crafted with lots of photographs of old radios, it fails to weave or tell a story, any story. There are bits here and there, excerpts and some interesting details. If you are looking for an in depth treatise on the topic, look elsewhere.
Published 6 months ago by Ron Gonzalez


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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Clandestine Radio Operators, May 28, 2012
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This review is from: The Clandestine Radio Operators (Paperback)
As a stealth amateur radio operator, I was thrilled to purchase a copy of this great book. I had seen other books on the subject matter and on nearly every aspect of World War II but this was the book I thought I was searching for. It compliments another book I own entitled, " Wireless for the Warrior", vol.4 (UK) that chronicles the history of clandestine radio communication equipment.

The book is well written but says little of the clandestine lives of the agent radio operators: I wanted to see how "pianists" (code name for clandestine radio operators) set up their equipment and how they managed to erect and conceal the necessary outdoor end-fed antennas from the Nazis. The book offers generic details and photos of WWII clandestine transceivers as well as "pianists" training and deployed in the field without offering technical information on the "pianists" actually hid and used their equipment. Overall though, a great book.
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars -... ..- -.-- / .. -, December 16, 2011
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This review is from: The Clandestine Radio Operators (Paperback)
During World War II the use of clandestine radios for agent communications was widespread. Literally hundreds of agent network circuits were operating during the war. On both sides the clandestine signal operations, plans (call signs, frequencies, and times of transmissions) and procedures used by agents were for the most part of the utmost simplicity, especially compared to modern military communications. Generally four types of agent radio operators can be distinguished during operations in WW II, those who operated in metropolitan areas in concert with well-organized underground organizations; those who operated as singletons in cities; those who were with the guerrilla groups; and those who worked as singletons in isolated rural areas. For the Allies most of these agents came from the American Office of Strategic Services (forerunner to the CIA) and the British Special Operations Executive (SOE), as well as other Allied covert forces like the Long-Range Desert Group, Special Air Service, Commandos, Rangers and Alamo Scouts. This book covers the selection and training of agents as radio operators; code procedures and encryption techniques; mission and operation highlights; with the majority of the book covering technical date and radio sets manufactured by the Americans, British and Polish for special warfare. This book is profusely packed with B&W and color photography on every page with a vast majority never appearing before. This is very good niche book on the form of secret warfare. I recommend this book to anyone with an interest in pirate radio operations, HAM radio/amateur radio enthusiast, covert communications, cryptology and special operations will find this book very interesting.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Must have for the history buff or amateur radio op, February 21, 2013
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This review is from: The Clandestine Radio Operators (Paperback)
Because of the high-quality in its production, it's almost a slightly scaled-down version of what I'd call a coffee-table book. Fine text, stories, and vignettes. However, the focus is on the actual gear used and the methods. The photography (B&W and color) done to document the vintage equipment (and sadly not much remains) is superb.

If you are a radio operator, particularly someone who likes the simplicity of thrown wire, low power and a Morse key, this is a must-have. Ditto if you are World War II history buff; you need to add this one to the body of work on your shelf.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful book and historical document, July 22, 2012
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Roberto Salazar "Robsalguz" (El Salvador, Central America) - See all my reviews
(REAL NAME)   
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This review is from: The Clandestine Radio Operators (Paperback)
It shows the beginnings of what we, Ham Radio Operators, now call QRP (low power radio communications).

Beautiful clear and big macro photos, both Black and White and Color, shows the equipment developed by the British, the North Americans and also the Polish in exile. This radios were the very first QRP radios in history.
This radio units were parachute dropped on occupied territories for the various resistance groups (like the famous Paraset Whaddon MK-VII radio)and, in the majority of cases, the British trained clandestine specialist radio operator was also infiltrated into enemy occupied territory by air, sea or land together with his/her equipment.
General information about equipment is provided, examples of radio codes given, covert operation procedures briefly revealed and more.
It does not get into detailed information like how they deployed their antennas or detailed operation of the different models or how they managed to hide their radios but you get an idea.
The book provides, with brief examples, how difficult life and operations was for the SOE and OSS agents/radio operators in order to relay the required information to England.
Life expectancy of this radio operators was very short and their very high mortality rate is explained.
Advanced Direction Finding network and procedures used or deployed by the enemy to detect the clandestine radio transmitters is also described.
Under such difficult and life threatening conditions, this radio operators managed to send their messages using so basic and sometimes difficult to use equipment.

This is a "must have" book. It is a historic and pictorial document to add to your basic HAM Radio collection.
If you are a QRPer, then you have no excuse for not having it.
Last but not least, this book is a tribute to all those unsung heroes of the war...
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars the gritty reality of WWII radio operators behind enemy lines, October 11, 2012
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This review is from: The Clandestine Radio Operators (Paperback)
This book is mostly old photos from WWII showing low power radio equipment, operators and the conditions under which they operated behind enemy lines. The captions and short commentary contain many typos or translation errors but the sense of urgency, danger, and inventiveness still comes through. This book can not be skimmed lightly, one must take the time to place one self into each photo setting and try to be there and feel the reality. Given this level of effort, this book effected me deeply. I learned a lot about the simple equipment, the high risks and the bravery of these men and women who provided critical intelligence back to war planners at great sacrifice. I would give it five stars if the editing was better.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Wish it were more words, fewer pictures, October 23, 2013
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This review is from: The Clandestine Radio Operators (Paperback)
The book is beautiful, but I was hoping for more of a read than a picture book, but it is still full of good info and the pictures of equipment and operators are very interesting.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Really neat, March 25, 2014
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LT Sharpe (Visalia, California United States) - See all my reviews
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This review is from: The Clandestine Radio Operators (Paperback)
Fascinating to see how relatively simple the equipment was and how important what it was used for was. Great photography. Recommended to vintage radio folks or ww2 buffs.
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3.0 out of 5 stars Artistic certainly, but where are the meat and potatos?, July 19, 2014
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This review is from: The Clandestine Radio Operators (Paperback)
Certainly a beautifully laid out ensemble, though beware. This isn't a manual or in depth study. Artistically crafted with lots of photographs of old radios, it fails to weave or tell a story, any story. There are bits here and there, excerpts and some interesting details. If you are looking for an in depth treatise on the topic, look elsewhere.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Little Voices, Great Results, March 29, 2014
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This review is from: The Clandestine Radio Operators (Paperback)
"The Clandestine Radio Operators" by Jean-Louis Perquin (Histoire & Collections;; Paris, EU, 2011) tops all published accounts of WW2 covert espionage communications in occupied France. It is an outstanding production. Just in terms of graphic arts the book exemplifies the highest quality of printing, photojournalism, writing and editing. Its content (image and text) is accurate in detail, exciting in description, complete from agent recuitment and training to deployment and operation. The book is rich beyond simple praise for its remarklable color photographs and technical specifications of the very small, portable, low-power shortwave radio sets developed by British (SOE), American (OSS) and Polish-in-Exile services for Free French (Maquis) agents dodging German counter-intelligence teams. The text is as informative and fascinating as the photographs and descriptions of these operators. Translated from French into English it reads smoothly (despite an occasional problem with technical terms expressed differently in English). "The Clandestine Radio Operators" makes up a perfect trio on a WW2 shelf alongside Geoffrey Pidgeon's "The Secret Wireless War" (UPSO; London, England, 2003) and "The Secret War" by Francis Russell et al (Time-Life BooksChicago, Illinois, 1981). And perhaps (unintentionally?) it is a tribute to the do-it-yourself amateur radio hobbyists of France and Britain of the 1930s who made much of this "hardware" so possible.
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4.0 out of 5 stars This is a well written history of a little known ..., December 9, 2014
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This is a well written history of a little known group of hero's during world war II. A very informative source for history buffs.
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The Clandestine Radio Operators
The Clandestine Radio Operators by Jean-Louis Perquin (Paperback - May 2011)
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