Wednesday, February 8, 2017

The Peshawar Lancers by S.M. Stirling

by Joe Glasgow

The earth is hit by a comet in 1878, and humanity fights for survival in this alternate history by S. M. Stirling. The book picks up the story in the 21st century; where technology has struggled to advance, and clings to technology from the late 1870’s. Humanity is dealt a devastating blow in the North Hemisphere, and is left in desolation with a cooling climate.

The North American Hemisphere has lost all semblance of civilization, and has become a land of barbarians. The power of the British Empire has relocated to their colonies in Australia, Indian, and South Africa with the help of their surviving fleet. The French to the Algiers, and the Russians somehow survive and turn away from the Orthodox church. 

The book is filled with fast paced action complete with a Russian conspiracy.  The characterization is solid, and the book rings a bit Kiplingesque. I would recommend read the appendix before you start the book. It is filled with a lot of details that will help when start the novel. The science is a bit shaky, but doesn’t take away from a solid tale by Stirling

Wednesday, February 1, 2017

Jackboot Britain: The Alternate History - Hitler's Victory & The Nazi UK! by Daniel S. Fletcher

Daniel Fletcher’s Jackbook Britain is set 1940 in the Nazi occupied United Kingdom.  There is no Dunkirk in this world and the British Empire has capitulated to Nazi Germany. The British Expeditionary Forces have been captured, and the characters live under the iron fisted occupation of the Nazis.

The first third of the book is a little slow getting started, but the action picks up at that point in the book. If you are looking for military action this doesn’t appear, and his only mentioned or the results hinted. The story focuses more on the social aspects of occupation by the occupied, and their German occupiers.

Fletcher is spot on with his characterization of the British folk, but he fell short with the Germans. The German characters came across being a little too one dimensional. The social commentary was too modern for my tastes, and not period enough.

Myself, I didn’t care for the ending. I thought it was too ambiguous, and would hope this is a series, and not a stand alone book. It is Fletcher’s first novel, and hope we see a second book to get a better feel for his work.