Austro-Hungarian submarines appeared late on the world´ scene and many of these were small and/or obsolete, but in spite of this they were successfully operating on the Adriatic and in the Eastern Mediterranean. From six trial submarines built during the decade before the First World War and joined by a seventh, being built on speculation and bought finally by the Imperial and Royal Navy, two were not of no use as fighting boats and other three were lost during the war. The group of five bigger submarines (being built in Germany after an Austro-German design) was sold there, as it was believed that they cannot reach the Adriatic during the war. Five small German UB I boats bought instead were not really a replacement for these custom-built boats, but were still useful as training vessels and small attack boats, operating in enemy waters and sinking there one enemy submarine and one torpedo boat. Four coastal boats of the Havmanden Type were a waste of time and resources needed to build them, but eight boats of the German UB II Type, built in license in Austria-Hungary and joined by two more units of German origin, were finally able – together with one salvaged and repaired French boat of the Laubeuf Type – to operate outside of the Adriatic too.
The author is describing the development of the Austro-Hungarian submarines, including their descriptions, technical data and short operational histories in WW I, and their fates during the war and afterwards. In addition there is a list of all German submarines operating under the Austro-Hungarian flag and temporary Austro-Hungarian designations, during the time as Germany was not at war with Italy, a former ally. There are more than 200 illustrations with numerous tables on the building and technical data, making this book an interesting addition to the libraries of warship´ and submarine´ enthusiasts and historians as well.