Another of the late Robert Conroy’s alternate history novels. This one is set in 1945. WWII in Europe is winding down, Berlin is about to fall. Harry Truman is now the US President. The change is scarily probable viewed from a modern perspective. Stalin decides that he want’s a bigger buffer zone than he was promised by Roosevelt and Churchill, so after taking Berlin, he turns the massive Red Army westward to attack American and British troops. Remember that the Russian army was really, really big at the time. Partially because of the US supplying them with food, clothing, weapons, planes, and oil for years. There are few factors that work in the Allies favor, including Stalin’s management style, and the Manhattan project. An enjoyable and engaging read. Check it out.
It’s taken a few years, but I’ve finally finished all ten seasons of Stargate SG:1. That, along with two movies, and seven seasons of two different spinoff series, make it one of the longest running and successful Science Fiction series of all times. Don’t forget the movie that the series was based on.
Over ten seasons, the series had time to do rich character development, story arcs, and even took the time to poke fun at themselves.
Overall, it is a good action series where the bad guys are truly bad.
Big Boys Don’t Cry by Tom Kratman
Tom Kratman writes a Bolo Novella. OK, they aren’t called “Bolos”, but Parthas. They are just huge, tank like, war machines with an AI core, that are pretty damn smart by the time they reach revs in the late thirties. Let’s just say that in this morality play, the Partha’s human masters do things to them that no Bolo (or Partha) should have to live through. I know a few things about the military, military history, and training. Subjects that Kratman is an expert on, and all three play a part in this story. An interesting read, with a happier ending than you would expect.
So every four years we elect a king. Since people like consistency, we tend to elect the same king as many times as we can get away with. (See previous paragraph.) And the king, especially in any sort of emergency, has a lot of power. They don’t always, or even most of the time, have enough to fix things right away. But they’ve got a lot of power.
Including the power to totally screw things up.
For the kids reading this, this is a very important point. When you choose your king, forget most of the reasons you think you should vote for the king. Mostly, the king can’t do much about the economy but ruin it. They can’t make you richer or smarter (although they can manage the reverse). If you want one suggestion, think about all the contingencies under which that king (or queen in this case) may hold your lives in his or her hands. And choose wisely.
Williamson revisits Kenneth Chinran, the “hero” of The Weapon. The war is over, Ken wants nothing to with his his role in the war, just be left alone and raise is daughter. Of course, that isn’t going to happen. One of Chinran’s team members has “gone rogue” and the Government of Freehold wants him taken down. Mainly because they don’t want other governments getting a reminder of just how deadly a trained Freehold Operative is. Chinran, and his lovely young assistant, travel across known space tracking down their prey as he performs assassination after assassination, including Earth, were Chinran is justifably afraid of being torn to small bloody bits by the surviving population.
The third in his latest series, which is “old school SciFi Space Opera”. Ya, we got your epic space battle right here, and in case you forgot no battle plan survives contact with the enemy. They have their own battle plans, that is why they are called the enemy. Sometimes you don’t win, but not losing can still carry the day. A damn fine read. May Mr. Ringo continue providing his ‘reader crack’ a pace that destroys laptops but pays for many new ones.
Part of Pournelle’s Condominium series, and more specifically part of the Falkenberg Legion series. An excellent read in the Military SciFi genre, and a damn good primer on low intensity conflicts as well.
SciFi Geek Bonus Points: The first mention of “Major Falkenberg” and the “Falkenberg Rifles” isn’t in a book by Mr. Pournelle. Geek points for identifying which Military Sci-Fi book does.
To kick things off, I am starting with one of my favorite SciFi authors, H. Beam Piper. Piper was in inspiration to many in the field today, including the massively best selling author, David Weber.