enhanced] DD-B

Book Note: William R. Forstchen, 1945

I read this book about 3-Nov-2001. This is the first time I've read this book. The book is copyright 1995. This note was last modified Thursday, 19-Dec-2002 16:22:14 PST.

This note contains spoilers for the book.


It's published as by Newt Gingrich and William R. Forstchen. I hear that Gingrich actually did participate; but when a major public figure and a real writer collaborate on the book, I figure crediting most of it to the writer is reasonable.

This is famous as the book that nearly killed Baen Books (dunno if that is true, though). He printed a whole lot more copies than demand actually called for. Apparently the rest of the country wasn't as enamored of Newt Gingrich as Jim Baen was. In that regard I should note that this is the first book I can recall where the publisher appears on the back cover (along with the authors and a consultant).

I have admittedly low tastes in some kinds of literature, but I'm having fun so far. This is an alternate history, which diverges when Hitler doesn't declare war on the US after Pearl Harbor (he was injured in a plane crash, others were temporarily in charge). Roosevelt doesn't get to declare war either, and Hitler ends up taking Eastern Russia and keeping most of Europe. England makes peace, but is not invaded.

I don't know how it's going to go, but I don't believe these authors are going to let the Nazi's win, and there are enough clues pointing to what's going to happen that I expect some major Nazi-killing fairly soon.

Right now, Otto Skorzeny is checking out Oak Ridge, Tennessee, getting ready for the major air-and-ground raid that's planned. But some of the Americans are onto him, partly because they left the body of his personal aide floating in the Charleston harbor after an accident transferring from the freighter.

There's minor mention of radar coverage perhaps spotting the incoming German planes (conflicting with an earlier report that they were spotted by a commercial flight), but really they don't make enough use of radar. They talk about trouble spotting periscopes with it, but they don't have radar coverage around Oak Ridge or Los Alamos.

The structure and pacing seemed strange, and at the end I see why -- "to be continued". Except I don't think it has been.

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David Dyer-Bennet