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Sat Dec 24, 2016, 10:26 PM

Want recommendations for a good alternate history book

I just finished the book version of The Man in the High Castle by Phillip K Dick, which is one of the more famous in the genre. That book's premise was that the Japanese and Germans won World War 2 in 1947 and America is divided - west of the Rockies belong to Japan and most of the east belongs to the Nazis. There's a small neutral zone east of the Rockies and it takes place in 1962, 15 years after the end of the war. (book was published a year or two afterwards, I believe)

I know there are some What if the South won the Civil War books out there (Didn't Newt Gingrich write one?) - but, that might be tough right now.

How about the 11/22/63 book from Stephen King?

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Arrow 24 replies Author Time Post
Reply Want recommendations for a good alternate history book (Original post)
NewJeffCT Dec 2016 OP
MADem Dec 2016 #1
NewJeffCT Dec 2016 #3
FrankfurtCat Dec 2016 #2
NewJeffCT Dec 2016 #4
FrankfurtCat Dec 2016 #5
dixiegrrrrl Dec 2016 #13
FrankfurtCat Dec 2016 #21
Staph Dec 2016 #6
NewJeffCT Dec 2016 #16
krispos42 Dec 2016 #17
NewJeffCT Apr 2017 #24
csziggy Dec 2016 #7
Doc_Technical Dec 2016 #8
PufPuf23 Dec 2016 #9
irisblue Dec 2016 #10
raccoon Dec 2016 #11
dixiegrrrrl Dec 2016 #12
dixiegrrrrl Dec 2016 #14
NewJeffCT Dec 2016 #15
krispos42 Dec 2016 #18
TeamPooka Dec 2016 #19
Wolf Frankula Dec 2016 #20
FSogol Dec 2016 #22
NewJeffCT Dec 2016 #23

Response to NewJeffCT (Original post)

Sat Dec 24, 2016, 10:28 PM

1. The year of rice and salt

I'm in the middle of it. Someone here on DU recommended it.

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Response to MADem (Reply #1)

Sat Dec 24, 2016, 11:10 PM

3. looks interesting

definitely on the list. Thanks!

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Response to NewJeffCT (Original post)

Sat Dec 24, 2016, 10:53 PM

2. The Last Days of the Late, Great State of California...Curt Gentry

I remember my Dad had this book in the early 70's and the cover totally fascinated me.
I don't know if it's good or not, my Dad wouldn't let me read it and I forgot about it.


[img][/img]

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Response to FrankfurtCat (Reply #2)

Sat Dec 24, 2016, 11:10 PM

4. Thanks

I'll have to look it up.

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Response to NewJeffCT (Reply #4)

Sat Dec 24, 2016, 11:25 PM

5. I think I can go ahead and read it now...

...I wonder if my Dad still has it!

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Response to dixiegrrrrl (Reply #13)

Tue Dec 27, 2016, 11:04 PM

21. Thank You...

...that'll save me some time and money

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Response to NewJeffCT (Original post)

Sun Dec 25, 2016, 12:36 AM

6. Have you heard of the 1632 book series?

A six-mile sphere around small town in West Virginia is suddenly scooped up in 2000 and deposited in the middle of Germany, in the middle of the Thirty Years' War. The West Virginians decide to start the American Revolution 150 years early.

I enjoy the books because the main characters aren't superheroes or millionaires or Seals. They are the local UMWA president, a history teacher, and a former hippie (and his marijuana patch). They find unexpected resources within themselves as they figure out how to survive and thrive and use the advantages of the twentieth century (sanitation, medicine, democracy, civil rights, etc.) to change the world.

If you'd like to sample the series, the first book, 1632, is available as a free download from Baen Publishing at http://www.baen.com/categories/books-by-series-list/ring-of-fire-series-by-eric-flint.html


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Response to Staph (Reply #6)

Sun Dec 25, 2016, 11:13 PM

16. Thanks

I had seen that on some online lists.

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Response to Staph (Reply #6)

Mon Dec 26, 2016, 12:51 AM

17. Omg, I've been trying to find this book for years now

I saw it once in a bookstore when I was looking through the fiction section. It looks interesting but I was deep into Harry Tutledove at the time. I never could remember enough to find it again when it occurred to me to look for it.

Thank you!

(this is not a bookmark )

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Response to Staph (Reply #6)

Tue Apr 4, 2017, 04:24 PM

24. Some thread necromancy here

but, I finally got around to finding an alternative history book and picked 1632, though there were a lot more choices in the genre than I had thought.

I'm almost halfway through and it's a really enjoyable read (or listen, since I have the audiobook version)

Thanks for the suggestion.

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Response to NewJeffCT (Original post)

Sun Dec 25, 2016, 01:10 AM

7. Harry Turtledove has written quite a few

The Wikipedia article has a good bibliography of his books with notes on the various concepts behind them: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Harry_Turtledove

My husband just got finished reading Eric Flint's 1632 series - the latest book he has is 1636: The Cardinal Virtues

Once also known on the internet as the 163x series, Baen for a time called the Ring of Fire series, and it is as frequently called the 1632 Universe or 1632verse; however it is named, it is a best-selling success. The alternate history series starts when the inhabitants of a small town in the United States find themselves transported back to Central Germany ... in the late spring (May) of 1631 with no way back. The first book title results because while the tale builds in 1631, the climax occurs when events in the Thirty Years' War nearly overrun the town in 1632.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eric_Flint_bibliography#The_1632_series


The next one will come out in Feb 2017.

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Response to NewJeffCT (Original post)

Sun Dec 25, 2016, 03:47 AM

9. Ecotopia

A novel both timely and prophetic, Ernest Callenbach’s Ecotopia is a hopeful antidote to the environmental concerns of today, set in an ecologically sound future society. Hailed by the Los Angeles Times as the “newest name after Wells, Verne, Huxley, and Orwell,” Callenbach offers a visionary blueprint for the survival of our planet . . . and our future.

Ecotopia was founded when northern California, Oregon, and Washington seceded from the Union to create a “stable-state” ecosystem: the perfect balance between human beings and the environment. Now, twenty years later, this isolated, mysterious nation is welcoming its first officially sanctioned American visitor: New York Times-Post reporter Will Weston.

from: https://www.amazon.com/Ecotopia-Ernest-Callenbach/dp/0553348477/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1482651832&sr=8-1&keywords=ecotopia

also:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ecotopia

Its been probably at least 25 years since I last reread the novel but the subject matter seems ever more timely.

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Response to NewJeffCT (Original post)

Sun Dec 25, 2016, 05:46 AM

10. Time & Again by Jack Finney

1970 scifi about time travel. I loved this book.

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Response to NewJeffCT (Original post)

Sun Dec 25, 2016, 07:55 AM

11. FATHERLAND by Robert Harris. nt

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Response to NewJeffCT (Original post)

Sun Dec 25, 2016, 03:04 PM

12. I will second Time and Again, it is a beautiful story

and was made into a rather good film, with Christopher Reeve.

11/22/63 was a tv series this year, btw.

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Response to NewJeffCT (Original post)

Sun Dec 25, 2016, 05:00 PM

14. Here is a site that gives awards for best alternative history books

Nice list of titles to look thru,

http://www.uchronia.net/sidewise/complete.html#2002

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Response to dixiegrrrrl (Reply #14)

Sun Dec 25, 2016, 09:18 PM

15. Thanks!

i'll definitely check that out

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Response to NewJeffCT (Original post)

Mon Dec 26, 2016, 01:05 AM

18. Harry Turtledove postulated the South winning the Civil War in his book "How Few Remain"...

...where the prologue described how some critical military communication is ALMOST lost (in the real world, it was lost and found by the North), which results in military and political victory for the South.

The story takes place a generation later, when the second Civil War breaks out.


He follows this up with a 4-book series where the USA and the CSA are on different sides when World War One breaks out: the US is allies with Germany and Austria-Hungary, and the CS is with Great Britain, France, and Russia. The brutality of trench warfare is mirrored here as US troops invade Canada and the CSA.

Note: Turtledove wrote a stand-alone novel called "The Guns of the South", where in 2013 (or so) South African pro-apartheid forces use a stolen time machine to ship AK-47s to the Army of Northern Virginia. The time machine only goes back exactly 150 years, and the white South Africans decide that having a modern slave-holding nation would be in their interest to prevent anti-apartheid forces from integrating South Africa in the early 21st Century. I think he wrote it before the collapse of apartheid. Anyway, of course, the South is able to quickly overcome the North due to the increased firepower of their soldiers. This story isn't the lead-in to "How Few Remain", but it seems the research required to write this one triggered a new branch of "what if..." books from Turtledove that he wrote without the sci-fi element of time travel.

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Response to NewJeffCT (Original post)

Mon Dec 26, 2016, 03:59 AM

19. related type story THE LOST REGIMENT novel series by William Forstchen, fun with history

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Response to NewJeffCT (Original post)

Tue Dec 27, 2016, 10:46 PM

20. His Powdered Wig, His Crown of Thorns

The British win the Revolutionary war and George Washington is crucified. This takes place two hundred years later, where Washington is a Christ figure.

I remember a novel in a Modern Roman Empire where Pilate had let Jesus go.

Wolf

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Response to NewJeffCT (Original post)

Wed Dec 28, 2016, 10:12 AM

22. I highly recommend: The Yiddish Policemen's Union by Michael Chabon

From wiki:

The novel is a detective story set in an alternative history version of the present day, based on the premise that during World War II, a temporary settlement for Jewish refugees was established in Sitka, Alaska, in 1941, and that the fledgling State of Israel was destroyed in 1948. The novel is set in Sitka, which it depicts as a large, Yiddish-speaking metropolis. Sitka's status as a Federal District has been granted for only sixty years, and the novel is set at the end of this period, as an evangelical Christian United States President is promising to go through with the 'Reversion' of Sitka to the State of Alaska.


PS: While I love Philip K. Dick's novels and short stories, "The Man in the High Castle" is probably his worst. He didn't seem to understand the difference between Japanese and Chinese culture. While not a alt-history book, I recommend "Ubik" by him.

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Response to FSogol (Reply #22)

Thu Dec 29, 2016, 04:14 PM

23. sounds promising

sounds like an interesting idea

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