“The action is nonstop, the characters very real—and very different from each other—and, to coin a phrase, it makes you think.”—S. M. Stirling, author of Island in the Sea of Time
In the year 2021, a multinational fleet—experimenting with untested weapons technology—pitched through time, crash-landing in 1942. The world is thrown into chaos as Roosevelt, Hitler, Churchill, Tojo, and Stalin scramble to adapt to new, high-tech killing tools, and twenty-first-century ways of war.
For “uptimers” like Britain’s Prince Harry and the men and women who serve aboard the supercarrier USS Hillary Clinton, war is a constant struggle with their own downtime allies, who are mired in ignorance and bigotry.
As the Allies counter the Nazi assault and set off for the coast of France, Japan begins to buckle, soon every battle will be played out in a lethal dance of might and intelligence, unholy alliances and desperate gambles, and each clash will be fought with the ultimate weapon; knowledge from the future.
Thanks to the historical records, all sides know that two superpowers will emerge while the losers will be pounded into submission. But time has shifted on its axis, so none know who will survive or how peace will take hold in a world turned upside down. These are the questions that John Birmingham brilliantly answers in his critically acclaimed adventure of war and imagination.
The eagerly awaited conclusion to Birmingham's popular Axis of Time trilogy (after Designated Targets and Weapons of Choice) deftly explores how a temporally displaced 21st-century naval battle group changes the outcome of WWII, both militarily and socially. In 1944, the Germans and the Japanese may be close to developing an atom bomb, while the swift Russian advance in the east threatens to engulf all of Europe. Admiral Kolhammer and his future warriors, veterans of 20 or so years of the war on terror, can be just as ruthless as the Axis. How the social changes inspired by Southern California's multicultural "zone" will fare in the face of opposition from the followers of the outed (and self-slain) J. Edgar Hoover remains an open question. Since the western Allies are left facing a Soviet Union that refuses to accept the judgment of history, it's clear that the author has the makings for a sequel. Alternate history fans can only hope Kolhammer and crew will soon be back.