Thursday, 2 February 2017

The Desolation of Smog

Posted at

 My review:
This review is from: Republican Roman Warships 509-27 BC (New Vanguard) (Paperback)
This book is a poorly written and presented account. The reconstructions are erroneous and at least three directly based on preexisting works. Ancient authors are directly contradicted. Modern researches are not included. I have made a lengthier critique on my blog Rams, Ravens and Wrecks. The text is so idiosycratic and has so many typos that it seems not to have been proof-read. The suggestion that an oarcrew should chant a special song is made, despite Thucydides stating a good crew was a silent one and the crew included a musician who dictated the rythm. A suggestion is made that sailors wore a specific Etruscan costume. etc.
The single star is due to the concise chronology of naval wars - material available many other places.

Dear Sir
I am always open to criticism but constructive ones. This one is completely useless. You say that the reconstructions are erroneous. Where? It should be important to understand it. The reconstructions are directly based on ancient sources and modern books (all the modern bibliography is quoted) but of course not all the ancient authors are speaking about the same ship model neither existed only one type of Triremes or Quadriremes.
About the text has been review by Osprey, english mother-tongue people. About the mention of Thucydides, I can remember You that we are dealing not with ships of the Thucidides Greeks, but with Roman ships, and the song I reported is from an ancient source. The images of the Roman ships in the punic wars is copied from the Etruscan urnes, where sailors are dressed exactly like I have reconstructed.
At the moment, Your critics are just smog. But I am waiting for technical details, mention of the sources, etc..
Best wishes
Dr. Raffaele D'Amato

I replied:

Take a look at my blog Rams Ravens and Wrecks for detail.
Is this written by Andrea Salimbetti or Raffaele D'Amato ?

1 comment:

  1. This is interesting, but for a different reason. I reviewed a set of rules by a Dutch author that were published by Partizan Press. There were all kinds of typos, errors, and sentences that just did not make sense. I then reviewed a different set of rules, also by Partizan Press, but by a German author. Those rules had a reputation for 'bad translations'. As I emailed the author, it turns out that publishers do little more than get a book printed – often outsourcing the project to other printers – and then send it into the distribution stream. Both authors indicated through email that largely *they* were responsible for the translation and editing. What used to be the traditional tasks performed by the publishers. The world of books – at least in our niche – has changed. This is not limited to small self-publishers like Ganesha Games. I would not be surprised if Osprey Publishing were not doing the same and these authors simply do not realize that they are responsible for the quality of their book, not Osprey.