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  #61  
Old 06-25-2011, 08:27 PM
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Leg, is that the same author who wrote the Dorsai books? I read a few of those in high school.
That would be correct, yes.
Originally "Wolf and Iron" was a short story, however he re-wrote it years later as a full blown novel after discovering his assumptions of wolf behaviour in the original story were incorrect.
The book really shows how after an unspecified world wide catastrophe (economic I think) settlements become extremely, even violently insular and only the very brave, very stupid, or very prepared brave the wilderness between settlements.
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  #62  
Old 06-25-2011, 09:10 PM
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I came across this on Amazon and thought it might be of some interest to some of you. Hopefully its not been posted on here before

http://www.amazon.co.uk/Essential-WW...R16D16NYX345PS
I actually have 11 out of the 13 on that list.
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  #63  
Old 06-26-2011, 04:49 AM
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I actually have 11 out of the 13 on that list.
I'm sadly lagging behind at 5 of the 13. Tempted by Chieftains, but I think its a wee bit outside my budget at the moment - two wee ones are soaking up my cash
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  #64  
Old 08-03-2011, 08:40 PM
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Just finished the semi-autobiographical Vietnam War novel, Matterhorn, and it was outstanding. I highly recommend it. Not only was it incredibly powerful and moving, it helped me better understand how a depleted Marine rifle company functions (and I plan to use this in a T2K setting eventually).
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  #65  
Old 08-03-2011, 09:52 PM
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...I plan to use this in a T2K setting eventually.
The Elblag scenario? Looking forward to seeing how that pans out - very interesting situation you've detailed so far and fits in very nicely with both what we know from canon materials and the most logical extension of that.
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  #66  
Old 08-04-2011, 06:16 AM
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For anyone who enjoyed On The Beach, I can recommend any of Nevil Shute's books. My favourite is probably Ruined City; set in the Great Depression, it is the story of a banker who sets out to save a small town in return for some kindness shown to him there.
Scale up the problems involved slightly and there is a some great material there for rebuilding a town in a T2k scenario...
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Old 08-04-2011, 02:38 PM
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Just finished the semi-autobiographical Vietnam War novel, Matterhorn, and it was outstanding. I highly recommend it. Not only was it incredibly powerful and moving, it helped me better understand how a depleted Marine rifle company functions (and I plan to use this in a T2K setting eventually).
Matterhorn is on my to-read list (okay, along with about a hundred others) -- reviews on it seem to be universally very good. I'll probably end up with it as an audio book, though in that format it is apparently narrated by Bronson Pinchot ("Cousin Balki" from the 80s sitcom Perfect Strangers, for those who recall it), which seems like it might be a bit off-putting, though I'm assuming he doesn't do the weird Eastern European/Greek/whatever accent . . .
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Old 08-04-2011, 02:50 PM
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Just finished the semi-autobiographical Vietnam War novel, Matterhorn, and it was outstanding. I highly recommend it. Not only was it incredibly powerful and moving, it helped me better understand how a depleted Marine rifle company functions (and I plan to use this in a T2K setting eventually).
My other half bought me a copy of this last week so I plan to start on it fairly soon.
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  #69  
Old 08-04-2011, 07:58 PM
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Matterhorn was so good, I seriously considered an immediate re-read. But, due to my rather long to-read list, I decided to save the 2nd reading for at least a couple of months down the road. I hope I don't set expectations to high, but it really was the cat's meow.

@Leg: You, sir, are correct.
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  #70  
Old 08-05-2011, 12:54 AM
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Just finished Andy McNab's War Torn which is possibly the best military novel I've read. It's the story of an ordinary infantry platoon in Afghanistan and their wives back home. Excellent read.
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  #71  
Old 10-18-2011, 02:02 PM
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I just got a package from Amazon containing Red Army and First Clash based on your guys' recommendations in this thread. I'm looking forwards to reading them.
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  #72  
Old 10-21-2011, 08:50 PM
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http://www.blackwinter.freeservers.com/Front.htm

Heres a blast from the past........
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  #73  
Old 01-12-2012, 03:44 PM
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Once an eagle by Anton Myrer.

An US Army officer's career, through both World Wars. Sam Damon is a mustang and a fighter, contrasted by the much-more cultured Courtney Massengale, who often ends up in the same organization. A great book for those who sympathize with the lonely professionals of the peacetime service. A friend of mine who went to West Point told me they loved that book when he was there.

There was a TV miniseries made for it about 1976, I saw some of it back when I was 8. Sam Elliott (the gravel voice of many a Western) is the star. I remembered that for a long time, and then found the book in 1993. I read it then, I just found the DVD set on Amazon for $6. So I am re-reading it now as I watch the Hollywood version (sorta butchered).

As with most historical novels, the characters are similar to Real-World people. Damon is some of Sam Woodfill and some of Robert Eichelberger. Massengale is some of Douglas MacArthur and some of his staffers.
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  #74  
Old 08-30-2012, 08:54 PM
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Default Fobbit

Fobbit by David Abrams.

This is an attempt to be something like the Catch-22 of the Iraq War. It shifts between several characters, some good NCOs and some bad NCOs, some good officers and some (pathetic, really pathetic) officers, all in or around one of the big palace FOBs in Baghdad. It wasn't laugh-out-loud funny to me, but it had the feel of what I've read in memoirs. It felt both real and surreal to me.

The author was in the Public Affairs Office of an armored division around 2005, just like some of the characters.

One tiny bit that is sticking with me: some mystery over why troops get so many baby wipes in care packages. One FOBbit who has some can't figure it out why they keep showing up, what's he supposed to do with it? An infantryman who left his wife with a one-month-old at home takes one after rough patrols just to remind himself what a clean baby butt smells like. Then he sobs for an hour.
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  #75  
Old 08-30-2012, 08:59 PM
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Default The Centurions

The Centurions by Jean Larteguy. This is one I read a long time ago, but just noticed isn't on this list.

It came out in 1962. The main character is a French paratroop officer, coming out of Dien Bien Phu and a Viet Minh PW camp. He forms a new parachute unit and leads them into the Algerian War. It's a classic of "muddy-boots" soldiers cutting through staff BS to get to the enemy, and perhaps losing their morals.

Basis for the Anthony Quinn movie, The Lost Command.
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  #76  
Old 09-02-2012, 11:38 PM
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Fobbit by David Abrams.


One tiny bit that is sticking with me: some mystery over why troops get so many baby wipes in care packages.
Baby wipes are moisturizers and used to clean your face with. ALSO good for wiping the crotch down when you can't shower regularly.
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  #77  
Old 09-03-2012, 12:37 AM
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For something a little different: Fiction, by John Ringo: "Last Centurion"

A bit of a political agenda being pushed in it, but an interesting read none the less when it comes to the "Your in the middle of indian country: you have *no* support, and only a company strong. Good Luck, you are on your own." kinda way.
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  #78  
Old 09-03-2012, 01:01 PM
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I have three recommendations, one of which is non-fiction.

1. The Windup Girl by Paolo Bacigalupi - ISBN 978-1-59780-158-4

Set in a future where the oil age has come to an end. The world population has crashed and now calories are a form a currency. Agro companies intentionally engineer food to promote dependency upon said companies. Bioengineered plagues and animals dominate the landscape. The book is heavily dominated by environmental themes. Yet, there is also a Blade Runner aspect to it as well. Highly recommended for anyone interested in such things.

2. Earth Abides by George R. Stewart - ISBN 0-449-21301-3

Written in 1949 and set in the San Francisco Bay area this is a story about a survivor of an incredibly virulent pandemic. Most of humanity is dead and this is the story of the survivors. Dont let the age fool you, its still a great book.

3. All The Devils are Here - by Bethany Mclean and Joe Nocera

A recouting of events that lead to the financial crisis that swept the world in 2008. Largely non-partisan and packed with details its a fascinating read. It shows how reckless and often carelss many of the large banks had become.
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  #79  
Old 09-03-2012, 01:57 PM
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Originally Posted by TrailerParkJawa View Post
1. The Windup Girl by Paolo Bacigalupi - ISBN 978-1-59780-158-4

Set in a future where the oil age has come to an end. The world population has crashed and now calories are a form a currency. Agro companies intentionally engineer food to promote dependency upon said companies. Bioengineered plagues and animals dominate the landscape. The book is heavily dominated by environmental themes. Yet, there is also a Blade Runner aspect to it as well. Highly recommended for anyone interested in such things.
Good pick. I enjoyed it, although I found that it dragged a little in places. I could easily see calories becoming currency in the T2K world- Krakow kind of does this with its food chit program. I can't believe I didn't make that connection when I was in the process of reading the book- I usually link nearly everything to T2K in some way.

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2. Earth Abides by George R. Stewart - ISBN 0-449-21301-3

Written in 1949 and set in the San Francisco Bay area this is a story about a survivor of an incredibly virulent pandemic. Most of humanity is dead and this is the story of the survivors. Dont let the age fool you, its still a great book.
I couldn't finish Earth Abides. It wasn't a bad book (I stopped about 2/3 in) but it just didn't consistently capture my interest.
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Old 09-03-2012, 02:12 PM
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Good pick. I enjoyed it, although I found that it dragged a little in places. I could easily see calories becoming currency in the T2K world- Krakow kind of does this with its food chit program. I can't believe I didn't make that connection when I was in the process of reading the book- I usually link nearly everything to T2K in some way.



I couldn't finish Earth Abides. It wasn't a bad book (I stopped about 2/3 in) but it just didn't consistently capture my interest.
I had to read Earth Abides at SJSU so begin to end was mandatory cause we had daily discussions in class.

I agree Windup Girl might drag in spots or leaves a few threads hanging. I think this book, like alot of sci-fi, is thinly veiled social critique of today's world. I've started reading the other books by the author and many are very dark visions of the future and the dominance of seed companies.

I did see T2k parrallels but I think the book largely stands on its own in the post oil age. What I loved most is how richly detailed that world is. I had to read this book in small chunks just to absord those details.
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  #81  
Old 09-03-2012, 05:47 PM
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Have we mentioned Pat Frank's Alas, Babylon in this thread? 'cause, that one.
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  #82  
Old 01-26-2013, 08:48 PM
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I've just finished reading From the Ashes, the prequel novel to the film Terminator Salvation, by Timothy Zahn. It's published by Titan Books, ISBN 9781848560864. I didn't have high hopes for the novel before I started reading it but I've been pleasantly surprised.

*SPOILERS*

The story of the novel follows two parallel paths that converge part way through, one about John Connor and his highly effective Resistance unit and the other about a USMC sergeant who had been on active duty near the US-Mexico border when Judgement Day occurred. The novel is set in the ruins of Los Angeles 10 years after the nukes flew. The Marine sergeant has taken on the duty of protecting a group of refugees in a partly-ruined housing or office complex.

Tim Zahn obviously has some concept of how military units operate and his descriptions of irregular urban warfare against Skynet's forces are really pretty good. There's a lot of emphasis on scrounging for usable supplies, repairing old and much abused vital equipment and setting up caches and fall-back positions.

If any of you happen upon this novel in your travels, I can recommend it. It has a definite T2K feel, just with the threat of implaccable, minigun-toting, deaths-head metal skeleton monsters thrown in.
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  #83  
Old 01-31-2013, 12:13 PM
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Definite recommendation for

The Texas-Israeli War: 1999

Its a 1974 science-fiction novel by Jake Saunders and Howard Waldr that I found at a used bookstore in LA about ten years ago.

Reads very much like Twilight 2000 with a scenario that has the US breaking apart during a WWIII scenario that has the world powers fighting with biological and chemical warfare instead of nukes (only a few left after a disarmament treaty). Right down to factories shutting down, planes disappearing because of a lack of spare parts, huge population losses due to the war and its effects.

I highly recommend it for those running a campaign - some great ideas in that book.
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  #84  
Old 01-31-2013, 06:30 PM
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There are many PA and military fiction titles available on the Amazon Kindle that major publishers probably would have rejected because it's too small a niche market or because of other prejudices. The titles are generally inexpensive and some are very good. The downside is that some could have used more proofreading or editorial input, However, if you're willing to overlook occasional misspellings and grammatical mistakes there are quite a few gems to be had.

Here's a list of some of those I've read in the past year that I would recommend

WWIII Fiction
Chieftains by Bob Forrest-Webb – A BAO version of Team Yankee. Well written and believable.
Invasion by DC Alden – A unified Middle East caliphate invades Europe and Great Britain. A little far fetched but worth reading.
Invasion: Alaska by Vaughn Heppner – Takes place in twenty years and has elements of sci-fi but reads like Red Storm Rising. One of the best on the list.
Invasion: California by Vaughn Heppner – A sequel to Invasion: Alaska but even better. Highly recommend this one.
The Blast of War by Adam Yoshida – A fictional history of a near-future conflict within the USA and between the West and China. Reads like Keegan or Ambrose.
A Land War in Asia by Adam Yoshida – Sequel to Blast of War.
A Thousand Points of Light by Adam Yoshida – Sequel to Land War in Asia, conclusion of the trilogy.
Dawn of the Tiger by Gus Frazer – Near-future invasion of Australia by China.
The Third World War by Humphrey Hawksley – China vs. Russia vs. the West. Not a happy ending.
Line of Control by Mainak Dhar – Conventional and nuclear conflict between Pakistan/China and India. Good read for a different perspective.

WWIII/SHTF Fiction (Cosy Apocalypse)
Long Voyage Back by Luke Rhinehart – People with a yacht try and avoid the effects of a nuclear war.
The Living Will Envy the Dead by Christopher Nuttall – Nuclear war as seen by survivors in a small mountain town.
Then Came War by Jacquelin Druga – Survivors of a trainwreck emerge to find that the US has been attacked and invaded.

SHTF Fiction
Half Past Midnight by Jeff Bracken – EMP survival
77 Days in September by Ray Gorham – EMP survival.
Before the Door by Ruth Godwin – Post-nuclear survival of a young girl.
Fifty Falling Stars by Wesley Higginbotham – Civil unrest, nukes, dogs and cats living together. One of the better ones.
Final Dawn by Mike Kraus – EMP and nuke survival.
Land (Stranded) by Theresa Shaver – EMP survival, kind of a young-adult story.
The Jakarta Pandemic by Steven Konkoly – Pandemic (duh) survival for a family in the suburbs. Well written.

Post Apoc Fiction
The Old Man and the Wasteland by Nick Cole – A kind of Old Man and the Sea for PA buffs. More sci-fi than others on the list but worth reading.

Zombie Apocalypse
Tooth and Nail by Craig DiLouie – A platoon of infantry in New York City during an outbreak of a zombie infection. Original and militarily accurate.
Infection by Craig DiLouie –A group of survivors with a Bradley IFV attempt to escape Pittsburg and reach a survivor group. Very original zombies and story.
The Killing Floor by Craig DiLouie – A sequel to Infection.
Plague of the Dead by Z.A. Recht – Marines and sailors escape a zombie infested Middle East to return home only to find zombies here. A second plot line revolving around a potential cure.
Thunder and Ashes by Z.A. Recht – Sequel to Plague of the Dead

Real Combat Stories
House to House by John Bruning – Memoirs of a mechanized infantry sergeant’s experience in Iraq, with a focus on Fallujah. Made me say “holy ****!” a lot.
Outlaw Platoon by Sean Parnell – Memoirs of an infantry platoon LT in an exposed OP in Afghanistan.
Sniper: A Novel by Nicolai Lilin – I know it says novel but if this isn’t somebody’s actual experiences fighting in the Chechen wars, I’ll eat my hat. Brutal combat and gut-wrenching experiences.

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  #85  
Old 01-31-2013, 07:29 PM
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Neal5x5, I've read House to House by John Bruning and enjoyed it. The author is not what you'd describe as a humble man but I guess if you've been through what he has you're entitled to be proud of yourself.

The 3 books you've listed under Real Combat Stories probably belong in the OT - Book (Non Fiction) Review/Recommendations Thread. That's got some great reading suggestions in it if you haven't looked at it before.
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Old 07-19-2013, 12:20 PM
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Default The Romanov Cross, by Robert Masello

An Army epidemiologist is sent to Alaska to find out if some corpses emerging from the permafrost still carry the 1918 "Spanish flu." The corpses are coming from a remote island, said to be haunted by the souls of the Russian immigrants who died there, and there's a historical mystery to be uncovered.

The story is tightly written, there are some supernatural elements, but they could be real or imagined, and they do not overshadow the story that it becomes a ghost story in itself. The military elements are present, but not a key structure. I felt like the author had a little confusion, or maybe just loose writing, between the National Guard and the Coast Guard elements near the end.

Spoiler: Grand Duchess Anastasia Romanov escaped from Siberia, protected by Rasputin's blessing, and is the sole survivor on the island. The jewels that she carried away are part of the mystery. A silver cross, given to her by Rasputin, is her protection.

This could come into a T2k game in several ways.
1. TEOTWAKI brought about by a re-appearance of the influenza that killed millions of people in 1918, then burned out. I've seen an estimate that 20% of the world's population was infected (or was that exposed?).

2. In a 'canon' T2k setting, American or Soviet troops in Alaska go to scout this island, and could uncover its secrets, just like "King's Ransom."

3. If running a Twilight:1918-19 game like I have done (and likely will do again), the Romanov element is an obvious plot device, just like "King's Ransom." This could also have the threat of the deadly flu hanging overhead.

4 stars (of 5), a good read on a sleepless night.
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Old 07-28-2013, 03:20 AM
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I have a couple of suggestions:

Opening Moves by Colin Gee.
A rather chunky book set just after the end of WWII in Europe, positing that the Soviet response to the Manhattan Project is to fuel up the T34s and start rolling Westward beyond the Elbe. So it pits the Red Army against British and American forces in Europe. I have to say, this didn't grab me at all - it is written in the "Red Storm Rising" manner but character development is pretty lacklustre and the author seems to be writing up AARs from some wargame campaign. There is a whole series of these under the "Red Gambit" label.

The Red Effect by Harvey Black
This is a much slimmer volume and is set in 1983 - again the story is told from viewpoints on both sides of the Iron Curtain (doesn't that expression just leave you nostalgic for what seems a simpler time and place?) in the period leading up to WWIII. I was again a bit disappointed with this book - it is only 255 pages long and ends just as the action starts - I felt a bit short changed. But what is there is done fairly well - apparently it is the first of a trilogy.
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Old 07-28-2013, 07:22 PM
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Hmm...Neal I think you may have sold me on the kindle...
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Old 07-29-2013, 08:54 AM
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Quote:
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I've read the "Ender's Game" and the four sequels that "complete" the cycle intitated in the first novel: "Speaker for the Dead", "Xenocide" and "Children of the mind" . Raellus, I recommend all of them to you. And forget about "targetted at young adults" with the sequels though I must warn you: they are not about the war, though some of their consecuences are in the background of the plot.

As Targan said, there are other novels from Orson Scott Card set in the same universe apart from the listed above, but I've not read them. Some of them, I think are like some kind of "spin-off" with characters from the first novel.
FYI they are finally turning Enders Game into a movie...
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Old 09-22-2013, 12:41 AM
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The Forever Engine - Frank Chadwick

Well... I got my hands on an ARC of this book, and read through it over the past few hours.


Not too shabby. Its seriously steampunkish, mixed with a little alt-history. In a way.

Its told via first person, with the main Character, Jack Fargo, being a former special operator turned historian, and a cast of historical and made up characters to support the bad guys and the good guys.

Now, after this point, we have da spoilers, so be aware:















Right.

It starts off with a bang - literally. It barely gets past the first 10 pages when the action starts, and sends our hero - through a weapon that didn't work as designed, and tore a hole in time and space, back into the late Victorian Era.

Just not the one we know of.

Here in this era, we have a strong flavour of Space 1889 coming into play, with Liftwood and Ether Propellers all making an appearance, as well as travel to mars being mentioned more than once, though it doesn't play out in the book. I honestly, would not be surprised if some of the characters, be it principle or otherwise, was earlier mentioned in one of the Space 1889 stories.

Our Hero has a rough time of it to start, being an American in England: An England that is about to go to war with America according to the press, without documents and crazy story about being from the future. Through the actions of a third party though, he is shown to be relatively truthful, at least enough so that it is decided that his co-operation would be usefull in determining who was behind the time travel, as the explosion that brought him back wasn't the only one, and there is that little matter of a bloodthirsty snatch team being sent right away to grab him by a mysterious Mr. X in London proper. That sort of thing just isn't done don't you know? A number of historical characters are brought into play, mostly as background, though one is a principle character, though unless you are a geek like me, you won't know know who he is till the end of the book.

They travel through Bavaria, in the middle of October, and the bad guys make another snatch attempt, interrupting a local festival in the City of Munich. Again, that just isn't done - and the team gets additional help in tracking down the now known location of Mr. X.

Of course, things never go that easy: They are promised assistance from a squad of scouts by the Turks, who, alas, wasn't told that they was being offered, so a bad case of blue and blue happens. Which leads to probably the best line where the British Captain, shaken by the results of the BonB, asks what is the best way to avoid it. The answer? "Career change was working pretty well for me until today."

A series of further hiccups results in the capture of our hero by Mr. X, who claims he can return him home, but as the Hero discovers what that claim is about - and worth, the fellow hero's, said to be dead, who turn out not; stage a rescue, leading to a final battle between Mr X and the gang of Hero's.

Pretty much standard fare for most books like this, but it is rather enjoyable, a easy read, and all in all worth the money to read.

Now, I tried to keep spoiler free: Mr. X is revealed fairly early, and there is a very good twist at the end, that twists a few more ways than most twists out there. But all said and done, this is a good one.

The ARC is available now, via the Baen.com ebooks page.
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