Synopses & Reviews
Harry Turtledove-the master of alternate history-has recast the tumultuous twentieth century and created an epic that is powerful, bold, and as convincing as it is provocative. In Drive to the East he continues his saga of warfare that has divided a nation and now threatens the entire world.
In 1914, the First World War ignited a brutal conflict in North America, with the United States finally defeating the Confederate States. In 1917, The Great War ended and an era of simmering hatred began, fueled by the despotism of a few and the sacrifice of many. Now its 1942. The USA and CSA are locked in a tangle of jagged, blood-soaked battle lines, modern weaponry, desperate strategies, and the kind of violence that only the damned could conjure up-for their enemies and themselves.
In Richmond, Confederate president and dictator Jake Featherston is shocked by what his own aircraft have done in Philadelphia-killing U.S. president Al Smith in a barrage of bombs. Featherston presses ahead with a secret plan carried out on the dusty plains of Texas, where a so-called detention camp hides a far more evil purpose.
As the untested U.S. vice president takes over for Smith, the United States face a furious thrust by the Confederate army, pressing inexorably into Pennsylvania. But with the industrial heartland under siege, Canada in revolt, and U.S. naval ships fighting against the Japanese in the Sandwich Islands, the most dangerous place in the world may be overlooked.
From the Hardcover edition.
Harry Turtledove's remarkable alternative history novels brilliantly remind us of how fragile the thread of time can be, and offer us a world of "what if." Drawing on a magnificent cast of characters that includes soldiers, generals, lovers, spies, and demagogues, Turtledove returns to an epic tale that only he could tell-the story of a North American continent, separated into two bitterly opposed nations, that stands on the verge of exploding once again.
In 1914 they called it The Great War, and few could imagine anything worse. For nearly three decades a peace forged in blood and fatigue has held sway in North America. Now, Japan dominates the Pacific, the Russian Tsar rules Alaska, and England, under Winston Churchill, chafes for a return to its former glory. But behind the faade of world order, America is a bomb waiting to go off. Jake Featherston, the megalomaniacal leader of the Confederate States of America, is just the man to light the fuse.
In the White House in Philadelphia, Socialist President Al Smith is a living symbol of hope for a nation that has been through the fires of war and the flood tides of depression. In the South, Featherston and his ruling Freedom Party have put down a Negro rebellion with a bloody fist and have interned them in concentration camps. Now they are determined to crush their Northern neighbor at any cost.
Featherston's planes attack Philadelphia without warning. The U.S.A. lashes back blindly at Charleston. And a terrible second coming is at hand. When the CSA blitzkrieg is launched, the U.S.A. is caught flat-footed. Before long, the gray Army reaches Lake Erie. But in its wake the war machine is spinning a vortex of destruction, betrayal, and fury that no one, not even Jake Featherston himself, can control.
Now, President Smith faces a Herculean task, while an obscure assistant secretary of war named Roosevelt rises in his ranks. For the U.S.A., the darkest days still lay ahead. Across the globe, a new era of war has just begun. And in the hands of the incomparable Harry Turtledove, readers are treated to a masterful vision of what might have been. An enduring portrait of history, nations, and human nature in its many manifestations, "Return Engagement is a monumental journey into the second half of the twentieth century.
"From the Hardcover edition.
About the Author
HARRY TURTLEDOVE is a Hugo Award—winning and critically acclaimed writer of science fiction, fantasy, and alternate history. His novels include The Guns of the South; How Few Remain (winner of the Sidewise Award for Best Novel); the Great War epics American Front, Walk in Hell, and Breakthroughs; the World War series: In the Balance, Tilting the Balance, Upsetting the Balance, and Striking the Balance; the Colonization books: Second Contact, Down to Earth, and Aftershocks; American Empire novels Blood & Iron, The Center Cannot Hold, and Victorious Opposition; Settling Accounts: Return Engagement; Homeward Bound; Ruled Britannia (also a Sidewise winner), and many others. He is married to fellow novelist Laura Frankos. They have three daughters: Alison, Rachel, and Rebecca.
From the Hardcover edition.