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Stars & Stripes Forever: A Novel of Alternate History

Stars & Stripes Forever: A Novel of Alternate History [Kindle Edition]

Harry Harrison
2.8 von 5 Sternen  Alle Rezensionen anzeigen (22 Kundenrezensionen)

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From Kirkus Reviews

Another alternate-world workout from the veteran Ireland-resident American author, following his splendid Dark Ages trilogy (concluded with King and Emperor, 1996). This time, Harrison travels the high-traffic American Civil War thoroughfare. Here, as in real-world history, the Civil War is already under way when the captain of a US warship removes two Confederate bigwigs from a British vessel in international waters. Thereafter, matters diverge: in reality, a furious and minatory British diplomatic retort was toned down by Queen Victoria's beloved Prince Consort, Albert; in Harrison's version, Albert dies before he can rewrite the dispatch, leaving President Lincoln facing a senseless war with Britain. Meanwhile, thanks to several key changes in personnel, the Union's armed forces gain better equipment and grow stronger. In due course, British forces, massing in Canada, invade: predictably so, since their inflexible and conservative tactics are designed to wage not merely the previous war of 1812 but the Revolutionary War. At the same time, the iron-built Monitor and the ironclad Virginia duly clash in Hampton Roads, rendering almost the entire British Navy obsolete. Finally, a British force sent to break the Union blockade of the Gulf Coast accidentally attacks and destroys a Confederate stronghold, leaving the British commander-in-chief, the Duke of Cambridge, with no alternative (as he sees it) but to mount a full scale invasion of the CSA as well. Naturally, when attacked by a common enemy, the USA and CSA set aside their differences to deal with this new threat. Expect sequels. The best alternate worlds - such as Ward Moore's Bring the Jubilee - branch off from reality at a single, precise point. Harrison's, though, involves a string of what-ifs, each more improbable than the one before. The Civil War scenario has wide, guaranteed appeal, yet savvy readers will recognize wish-fulfillment, no matter how cleverly disguised as docudrama. (Author tour) -- Copyright ©1998, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.


--Science Fiction Chronicle

--The New York Times Book Review

--Science Fiction Age


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2 von 2 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
1.0 von 5 Sternen Saccharine-sweet slaughtering 31. Juli 2000
Von John Ward
This alternate history starts off great with the British war party urging an attack on the United States. Get in there, give the damn colonials what for, says the reader. Sure enough the commander goes over there and attacks the wrong side. I have absolutely no problem with this. There was far worse stupidity and incompetence in the real-life Crimean War a mere 10 years before. There follows a hugely enjoyable scene of mindless slaughter and rape (you don't get many decent rape stories these days) and then the novel falls to pieces. The syrupy sentimentality that seems to afflict all Americans kicks in. The Northern and Southern commanders get together to drive out the dastardly Brits and become the best of buddies and the southereners volunteer to abandon slavery. From then on nothing can go wrong for the Americans and they defeat the British at every turn. What utter bollocks. The two sides would never have been able to sink their differences to that extent and the high command's main concern would have been to keep them from one another's throats. In the Crimea the British and French were more interested in fighting each other than the enemy. In the novel that should have been written we would have seen all this. Slavery wasn't an issue anyway. Lincoln was quite prepared to tolerate it if that would preserve the Union. The trouble is that Harrison is such a good writer. I suspect he popped his clogs afater the Biloxi incident and the book was finished by someone not nearly as good. I have no objection to the two-dimensional nature of the characters. As we never get to know and love them, we can enjoy the senseless massacres that bespatter nearly every page. Neither do I have any problem with the way Queen Victoria is portrayed. The mad old bat was exactly like that. "Butty" for comrade is perfectly good 19th century usage: you work buttock to buttock in the mines. "Buddy" is a later variation.
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5.0 von 5 Sternen An Extremely Affecting and Moving Book. 24. Oktober 1999
What Harrison says in his Afterword is true: the American armies in 1862 were by far the most powerful fighting force in the world; military observers from all major countries were on hand to learn what modern war was turning into. And, of course the British were arrogant imperialists in those days -- ask the Irish and those living in India and China. (Remember the Opium Wars, fought to enforce the British right to sell opium to the Chinese people?)
When the British attack the USA from Canada and then mistakenly attack the Southern city of Biloxi from the sea, thinking it is the Northern outpost on Deer Island, the exhausted British soldiers break discipline after finding a warehouse of liquor, and end up raping the women of Biloxi. (Such breakdowns in British army discipline were rare, but not unknown.) This is exactly the kind of event that would have inflamed every Southern soldier with a desire for revenge, and when General Beauregard asks General Sherman for a truce so that he can move his troops to fight their common enemy, Sherman goes further by offering to join hs men with Beauregard's forces. This was a time when soldiers still thought in terms of honor, and Sherman was probably the most thoughtful and courageous general alive at the time. I was moved to tears by the scenes of the Bluecoats and Butternuts happily joining forces (they traded tobacco and coffee during truces, so this was also realistic) to attack the British forces. Add to this the genuine eloquence of people like Sherman and (especially) Lincoln, and the whole story was a moving experience. Turtledove's "Guns of the South" was extremely good (his later efforts have been more disappointing), but he never was able to capture the eloquence of Lincoln.
I bought this in paperback and ordered a Hardcover copy even *before* I finished reading it.
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1.0 von 5 Sternen Don't waste your money 1. November 1998
Von Ein Kunde
Format:Gebundene Ausgabe
I wish this rating system had a lower ranking then one star because even this suggests a book is partially acceptable when this book would not even make a good doorstop.This is probably the worst book, let alone novel, that I have ever read. It is stilted formula writing geared for jingoistic morons who know or care nothing about history. Given the fact that it is supposed to be "alternate history" the only similarity to actual historical events are the names. All the Americans are demigods the British fools and you wonder how these same Brits could have won and maintained the largest empire ever seen. Harrison would have us believe that Queen Victoria was a frumpy old drunk and that the English people lived in downright slavery under their aristocratic lords. That John Mills was a traitor and after one bloody battle both the North and South are willing to settle their differences where in reality they were to suffer ten times as many casualties and fight for three more years until the South finally quit. The Royal navy attacks the Union without the foresight of having attached Confederate officers that can distinguish between the Stars and Stripes and Stars and Bars. Then Mr Harrison has the audacity to say : this "could be a true story" and yes pigs might fly. The only thing that I can consider worse than this book is that there might be two more. Come on you environment lovers stop these books and save some trees. Mr Harrison stick to space where you can delve into fantasy to your heart's content. Readers,if you want real alternate history read Harry Turtledove skip this turkey.
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5.0 von 5 Sternen the future
Having read Stars and Stripes Forever, I eagerly awaited the next installment. It was worth the wait to read Stars and Stripes In Peril. Lesen Sie weiter...
Veröffentlicht am 10. April 2000 von michael vernon
3.0 von 5 Sternen Better than Turtledove!
I began reading hopeing to find something different than that of the usual negative Confederate alternate history, and this was to an extent. Lesen Sie weiter...
Veröffentlicht am 21. Januar 2000 von Jonny Reb
3.0 von 5 Sternen Relax and have fun with it
I admit it, I had fun with Harry Harrison's "Stars and Stripes Forever." Despite a couple of minor historical errors, Mr. Lesen Sie weiter...
Veröffentlicht am 30. November 1999 von Cheryl Hoffman
3.0 von 5 Sternen Big Ego in the way
This is the third AH book I have read about the Civil WAr era. I find that this book holds its own against the other two. Lesen Sie weiter...
Veröffentlicht am 23. November 1999 von Sean Satterlee
2.0 von 5 Sternen a good premise goes awry
When I studied history in college my professors told us never to play the "what if" game. Of course,such speculating was too much fun to resist. Lesen Sie weiter...
Veröffentlicht am 14. November 1999 von Cathi Douglas
1.0 von 5 Sternen An exceptionally disappointing work.
Leaving aside the excessively period prose, leaving aside the utter predictablility of everything (except the Trent affair), leaving aside even the impossible perfidy and... Lesen Sie weiter...
Am 2. November 1999 veröffentlicht
1.0 von 5 Sternen Very Disappointing
I was hoping for a much more belivable alternative history. The point of divergence was an excellent one -- the British almost did go to war with the U.S. over the Trent Affair. Lesen Sie weiter...
Veröffentlicht am 6. Oktober 1999 von Nelson Hellwig
1.0 von 5 Sternen Now we know why Turtledove is #1
Harrison is not a historian. It shows. Badly. His writing is okay -- if you happen to enjoy his somewhat unique style -- but gee whiz: there's hardly a single historically... Lesen Sie weiter...
Veröffentlicht am 26. August 1999 von Rod D. Martin
3.0 von 5 Sternen Another decent read.
This novel seems to be much like another Harry Harrison novel, A Rebel in Time. Both novels are placed in the civil war period, both have very interesting concepts and both suffer... Lesen Sie weiter...
Am 3. August 1999 veröffentlicht
4.0 von 5 Sternen Good book...makes you hunger for more!
Stars and Stripes Forever is indeed a enjoyable read. However there two problems with this first novel that I can see that hopefully will be corrected in the next one. Lesen Sie weiter...
Am 1. Juli 1999 veröffentlicht
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