It is November 1864 and General Sherman’s army is marching through Georgia. Sherman has recently burned much of Atlanta and meets very little opposition as his 60,000-man army aims for Savannah. General Hood’s Confederate army will soon be defeated in Tennessee by General Thomas’s Union forces. General Grant is squeezing the vise he has placed around Petersburg, and the Confederate capital Richmond is threatened. General Lee’s troops are demoralized, many shoeless, and some are deserting to return home so they can help feed and protect their families. The South has all but lost the Civil War and leaders on both sides sense the end is near. It is just a matter of time, yet the Confederates do not give up. They are hoping for a miracle.
Across the ocean comes a foreign fleet of submarines, promising to save the South from inevitable defeat. Is that possible? What could be their motive? And why do they come at the last hour?
This alternative history of how the Civil War ends presents both real and imagined events of that momentous conflict. Alternate Civil War history is now a common genre, with many essays and novels that posit a different ending. A subgroup of this genre invokes time travel to effect a different ending to the war.
Out of Time presents my own unique time travel, alternate-outcome scenario. I have also included an Appendix with the actual history for each of the book’s two parts. However, if you don’t wish to compare the novel’s events with what really happened, simply skip the Appendix and enjoy the book for what it is – the story of a different outcome to the Civil War.
I have taken liberty to use foreign language when it is appropriate to the story. Otherwise, when the Germans converse with Americans they speak English with a heavy accent, using “v” for most “w’s”, and “z” or “s” for “th.” However, so as not to slow down the reader I show their dialogue with regular spelling, occasionally reminding the reader that it is, in fact, heavily accented.
Out of Time ends with the war’s end but gives a hint of the changed future. Just how this alternative outcome affects the characters, and future generations of Americans, will be the tale for another novel.