No not another piece about economic catastrophe and economic chaos but a look ahead to some of the Osprey titles coming out in 2009 and some wild guessing as to which might be the most popular.

When we publish books here at Osprey some are obvious no-brainers, we know they are going to be big but some titles which we would regard as mid-list take us by surprise with their popularity. If you publish a book on WWII German armour you are probably going to do OK but sometimes we can be pleasantly surprised.

In 2008 our top three titles (excluding Field of Glory and the bigger hardbacks) were Special Forces Operations in Afghanistan, Imperial Japanese Navy Battleships 1941-45 and Armored Trains. All good titles, but why were they more popular than British Napoleonic Infantry Tactics, The Samurai Invasion of Korea 1592-98, Phillipi 42 BC or Griffon Spitfire Aces? It is not something than can be easily predicted.

So I'm going to attempt it for 2009. Of the 90 or so series titles we are publishing this year here are my predictions for the best sellers (not necessarily the best!).

In the 'These keep getting requested so they better do well' category we have Men-At-Arms 452: Belgian Army of World War One (May), Men-at-Arms 457: Imperial Armies of the Thirty Year's War (October) and Campaign 207: Solferino 1859 (April & available for pre-order). Men-at-Arms 454: Seminole Wars (August) also falls into this category.

In the 'It's World War II so bound to do well' category we have Campaign 205: Warsaw 1944 (March & available to pre-order) which has the added bonus of Peter Dennis artwork. Also in this category are Campaign 215: Leningrad 1941-44 (September), Aviation Elite Units 31: 23rd Fighter Group (May) and Raid 01: Pointe-du-Hoc which also falls into the 'Cool new series' category. For more details on this series click here.

Now I could go on at length about all the great titles coming out (Aircraft of the Aces 88: Pusher Aces of World War I (June) anyone?) but should stop now. I'll leave you with my final category 'Why is the Nineteenth century not more popular?' and three titles that I'm hoping will do well. They are: Fortress 81: Maori Fortifications by Ian Knight (April) and available to pre-order now, Warrior 138: Roosevelt's Rough Riders (June) and Essential History 40: Anglo-Afghan Wars (September).

Bet they all get beaten by a book on a tank.