Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Several good reads

I have just finished the first book in the trilogy by John Birmingham - Weapons of Choice: World War 2.1. and have started on the second book (Designated Targets: World War 2.2  and Final Impact: World War 2.3 make up the trilogy.)

Imagine if you will, the American Battle fleet under Admiral Spruance is steaming full speed towards Midway to intercept the Japanese fleet intent on over-running the island of Midway after Pearl Harbour. By some (yet to be fully understood) scientific mishap a Multi-National Force (MNF) under US Admiral Phillip Kollhammer (yes, of German-Jewish extraction) is about to invade Indonesia to put down a Muslim International Jihad when they are forced back through time to 1942. 

In their real time Muslim extremists were massacring non-Muslims and European and Asian residents on Indonesia when the mishap/misadventure occurs and the MNF is transported back in time to intersect with the American battle fleet. The MNF flagship is the aircraft Carrier USS Enterprise, a gargantuan vessel by any standards but of ominous proportions in 1942.

It is night time and visibility is difficult. The Americans believe the new arrivals to be Japanese and open fire. The personnel on the MNF are disabled by the time travel experience and are barely able to stand but the MNF's battle computers react to the hostile act and begin to dissemble Admiral Spruance's Pacific Fleet. Casualties are high, particularly for Spruance's conventional naval fleet, after the automatic defences of the MNF come into play. Eventually  Kollhammer recovers sufficiently to order a cease fire of hostilities and Spruance reluctantly agrees after losing more than half his fleet.

OK - so far its straightforward. Now, add in the differing sociometrics of the two forces now loosely aligned as one. Spruance's force consist of white Americans with a hostile racial view towards Asians, Negroes and any persons of European origin, particularly Mex-Tex Spanish. Kollhammer's MNF is made up of units from Australia, New Zealand, Britain, Ex-Indonesian Navy (little more than 'pirates') French (and one Japanese JDF) ships and has significant representations amongst its members from Russia, Germany and Italy and are equipment with the very latest technology and weaponry including communications, aircraft, helicopters, missiles and cannons.

Add to this a multi-racial American Marine Expeditionary Force commanded by a black American colonel who have been fighting Muslim extremists from Damascus to Dili for the previous two decades (their time) and you have a great setting to complete the first novel as this mixed force, inclusive of the Enterprise, returns to Pearl Harbour which is still reeling from the Japanese sneak attack on December 7 1941 and now has to contend with the partial destruction of its remaining Carrier battle fleet by the MNF 'Arrivals'.

Murder and mayhem!

Admittedly, most of this first book concentrates on the cultural aspects of embedding the 'Arrivals' - later referred to as the "21's" (from 2021) - amongst the "Temp" (contemporary) Americans.

Imagine the welcome they receive as the American High Command, full of all its racial and socio-cultural stereotypes meet this multi-national force in 1942. (The British First Sea Lord wants the RN's vessel, the "Trident", a  Missile Trimaran Cruiser, back home under 'proper English sailors' and its female captain and other female crew members re-assigned to appropriate tasks such as the 'catering services'!)

Slowly, the impact of the 'arrivals' has an impact on history and events begin to unfold in a way that changes the world for ever - and  - the Japanese Navy have got their hands on one of the (Ex-East German) Indonesian destroyers which, although not as modern as those in the rest of  Kollhammer's MNF, has sufficient technology on-board to the re-vitalise Japanese and German war machines.

Book two I've just commenced with the MNF now establishing a 'zoned' base in California and busilly trying to build the means of production to re-equip their depleted supplies (they had a subsequent  major confrontation with the Japanese military forces as they invaded Singapore and Luzon to free tens of thousands of POW's) and fighting to gain acceptance in an America after having killed thousands of their sons in the their initial encounter with Spruance's battle fleet. Resentment runs deep and murderous events occur inclusive of civil riots.

The world is not the same anymore and "The Grandfather" phenomenon of time travel is alive and well and the sexual revolution and equality that came with women's liberation reigns amongst the 'arrivals'.

All three books are downloadable from Amazon onto Kindle.

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