Length: 80 pages, including index This is a concise history of four ground-breaking German semi-auto and full auto rifles. The weapons covered are the Gewehr 41, Gewehr 43, Fallschrimgewehr 42 and the Sturmgewehr 44. The author starts off with a little history of 20th Century tries at semi- and full auto rifles for the soldier in the field, such as Mondragon's rifle and the rifles of Soren Bang of Denmark. The Bang rifles had their influence on the first two semi-autos Germany made in WWII, the Gewehr 41 and 43. McNab then gives us the FG 42 and its select fire capability built around the 8mm Mauser round. The Sturngewehr 44 was built around the first "intermediate" cartridge, the 7.92 by 33 "short" Mauser round, to give us the first "assault rifle." The influence of this on the AK-47 is argued by showing that the Russians did test the weapon and their designers came up with their 7.62 by 39 round, around which the Kalashnikov was built, and then Kalashnikov himself arguing he couldn't have known about the German weapon. I like that McNab gave us the history and anecdotes about the weapons involved and even after action reports by Americans describing what it was like to be on the receiving end of these weapons. I didn't like that he didn't have pictures for every weapon he discussed, like the Volksgewehr 1-5, though I know you could look online for it. This is one of the Osprey Weapon series, and would fit well into any collection about WWII.