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Atlantis and Other Places Hardcover – 7 Dec 2010

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 440 pages
  • Publisher: Roc; Reprint edition (7 Dec. 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0451463641
  • ISBN-13: 978-0451463647
  • Product Dimensions: 16.6 x 3.7 x 23.7 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,876,307 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Harry Turtledove is the award-winning author of the alternate-history works The Man with the Iron Heart; The Guns of the South; How Few Remain (winner of the Sidewise Award for Best Novel); the Worldwar saga: In the Balance, Tilting the Balance, Upsetting the Balance, and Striking the Balance; the Colonization books: Second Contact, Down to Earth, and Aftershocks; the Great War epics: American Front, Walk in Hell, and Breakthroughs; the American Empire novels: Blood & Iron, The Center Cannot Hold, and Victorious Opposition; and the Settling Accounts series: Return Engagement, Drive to the East, The Grapple, and In at the Death. Turtledove is married to fellow novelist Laura Frankos. They have three daughters: Alison, Rachel, and Rebecca.

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Paul Tapner TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 23 Sept. 2012
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Writer Harry Turtledove works mostly in the field of Alternate history, and has produced many novels in that genre. This is a collection of some of his short stories and novellas, the bulk of which are alternate history tales also.

Although the cover design makes it look as if it's part of his recent Atlantis series of novels, only two of the stories in this collection are actually set in that particular fictional universe.

All of the stories in here have also appeared elsewhere. Mostly in magazines but some in other anthologies.

All the stories have introductions from the writer that are short and to the point, and which explain how the story came to be.

Lead story 'Audubon in Atlantis' runs for sixty pages and see a famous naturalist visit Atlantis [for those not familiar with those novels, it's a world in which a large chunk of land broke off from America millions of years ago, and was discovered by europeans in the middle ages. The colonisation and subsequent history of the place parallels real American history] looking to paint a native species before they become extinct. The lead character does use the methods of the time in that he shoots and then paints the animals, and some may have issues with that. But it does go with the time period of the story. The whole thing is about a man who knows he won't be around forever looking for creatures who won't either. In a land where change marches on. As a piece about the fact that things don't last, it is quite moving at times.

'Bedfellows' runs for just ten pages and considers what would happen if the relationship between two real figures from this world was taken to a certain extreme. The central point is quite thought provoking and the story is just long enough not to outstay it's welcome.
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If you are into alternative history but have not previously read the twelve short stories and novellas in this collection you will probably really enjoy at least some of them. However, you may find it wise to check before buying which of them you have already seen.

The stories in this anthology and where they previously appeared are

1) Aubudon in Atlantis, first published in Analog, Dec 2005
2) Bedfellows, first pub. Magazine of Fantasry & SF, June 2005
3) News from the Front, first pub. Asimov's SF magazine June 2007
4) The Catcher in the Rhine, first pub. "The Chick is in the Mail" ed. Esther Friesner
5) The Daimon, first published in Turtledove's previous anthology, "Worlds That Weren't"
6) Farmer's Law, first pub. "Crime Through Time: III" ed. Sharon Newman
7) Occupation Duty, first pub. "Time Twisters" ed Jean Rabe and Martin Greenberg
8) The Horse of Bronze, first pub. The First Heroes: New Tales of the Bronze Age Ed. Turtledove and Noreen Doyle
9) The Genetics Lecture, first pub. Analog, Oct 2005
10) Someone is stealing the great throne rooms of the Galaxy, first pub. "Space Cadets" ed.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: 6 reviews
6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
super dozen alternate history tales 12 Dec. 2010
By Harriet Klausner - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
The super dozen alternate history tales were all previously published in the past decade, but never together. The one volume speaks loudly as to how skilled Harry Turtledove truly is when it comes to the sub-genre where he is the champion grandmaster whether it is a saga, a novel, a novella, or a short story. In the first entry, "Audubon in Atlantis", the naturalist arrives on the island seeking rare birds. The second tale satires Bush and Bin Laden who make strange "Bedfellows", who need each other like yin and yang. All the "News from the Front" is the news not worth printing during WW II, as Mr. Turtledove rips the main stream media. Whether it is the American leaving the ducks swimming in Central Park to attack a German castle as in "The Catcher in the Rhine", soldier "Uncle Alf" writing from occupied Paris in 1929 to his niece about the lazy French, re Socrates role in the Peloponnesian Wars ("The Daimon"), fans will agree this anthology affirms Mr. Turtledove's abilities whether he lampoons or just changes a pivotal moment he remains the top guru of the alternative historical universe.
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
12 excellent Alternative History short stories, but all have been published before 17 Jan. 2013
By Marshall Lord - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Mass Market Paperback
If you are into alternative history but have not previously read the twelve short stories and novellas in this collection you will probably really enjoy at least some of them. However, you may find it wise to check before buying which of them you have already seen.

The stories in this anthology and where they previously appeared are

1) Aubudon in Atlantis, first published in Analog, Dec 2005
2) Bedfellows, first pub. Magazine of Fantasry & SF, June 2005
3) News from the Front, first pub. Asimov's Sf magazine June 2007
4) The Catcher in the Rhine, first pub. "The Chick is in the Mail" ed. Esther Friesner
5) The Daimon, first published in Turtledove's previous anthology, "Worlds That Weren't"
6) Farmer's Law, first pub. "Crime Through Time: III" ed. Sharon Newman
7) Occupation Duty, first pub. "Time Twisters" ed. Jean Rabe and Martin Greenberg
8) The Horse of Bronze, first pub. The First Heroes: New Tales of the Bronze Age Ed. Turtledove and Noreen Doyle
9) The Genetics Lecture, first pub. Analog, Oct 2005
10) Someone in stealing the great throne rooms of the Galaxy, first pub. "Space Cadets" ed. Mike Resnick
11) Uncle Alf, first pub "Alternate Generals II" ed. Turtledove, Roland Green and Martin Greenberg
12) The Scarlet Band, first pub. Analog, May 2006.

The stories in this collection range from the very short ("The Genetics Lecture" is a three page, one joke story) to novellas (the stories set in Turtledove's "Atlantis" alternative world which bookend this collection are both about 70 pages.) They vary considerably in style and tone, from humorous pastiche to deadly serious, from the Bronze age to the far future, from things which could easily have been to whimsical fantasies one of which was classed as a "Probability zero" feature when it first appeared in Analog. A significant proportion of the stories in the book are detective stories of one kind or another, others are tales of war, exploration, or scientific discovery.

I'm not going to attempt to describe the subjects covered by all these stories in detail as that might easily give rise to spoilers, but these also vary greatly. One has a ship crewed by centaurs visiting Britain in the Bronze age, when the British Isles were known as the Tin Islands and were regarded as one of the most remote corners of the world and a near-mythical place in the then civilised world. I found this piquant because in the Bronze age, and down to a few centuries before the birth of Jesus Christ "the Tin Islands" were so little known that Herodotus in his The Histories (Oxford World's Classics)", actually queried the existence of the British Isles on the grounds that he had been unable to find an eye witness who could give a first hand account of them. This comment may be found on a page adjacent to a preposterous account of dangerous gold-digging giant ants which Herodotus accepted uncritically because he found several witnesses who confirmed it!

Another story in this anthology has Sergeant Hitler searching for Communist spies and French rebels while posted to France in a world in which the Central Powers won the First World War. A story told mainly from the viewpoint of Socrates suggests how a different response by Alcibiades to the charges brought against him could have changed the course of the Peleponessian war with increasingly dramatic consequences.

One story is set in the middle east in a time when the was between the Israelites and Philistines was about as far in the past as it is in our own history, but where the duel which in our Universe was won by David had been won instead by Goliath. Which means no Jewish nation, no Judaism, and therefore no Christianity or Islam either. Do you imagine that the area concerned might be more peaceful today? Turtledove invites you to think again.

Perhaps the most thought-provoking story in the book illustrates the potentially disastrous consequences had the American media reported the Second World War in the way that certain media outlets operate now.

Overall this is a very good, wide-ranging of Harry Turtledove's alternative history works which will appeal to most fans of his work in this genre provided they have not already read too many of the stories included.
4 of 5 people found the following review helpful
Unreal Tales 28 Mar. 2011
By Arthur W. Jordin - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
Atlantis and Other Places (2010) is a collection of Alternate History stories. It contains twelve tales, with short introductions by the author.

- "Audubon in Atlantis" (Analog, 2005) takes the painter into the backwoods to capture the likeness of a rapidly disappearing species.

- "Bedfellow" (F&SF, 2005) examines the unlikely relationship between a past president and a terrorist.

- "News From the Front" (Asimov's, 2007) illustrates the adage "loose lips sink ships" by showing how World War II might have gone with the current media approach.

- "The Catcher in the Rhine" (The Chick Is in the Mail, 2000) puts the main proponent into an awkward position.

- "The Daimon" (Worlds That Weren't, 2002) examines the possibilities of Socrates traveling to Sicily in the band led by Alkibiades.

- "Farmers Law" (Crime Through Time, 2000) considers a murder case in rural Byzantine Rome.

- "Occupation Duty" (Time Twisters, 2007) describes a conflict within the Middle East in another timeline.

- "The Horse of Bronze" (The First Heroes, 2004) follows a troop of centaurs to the Tin Isles.

- "The Genetics Lecture" (Analog, 2005) explains the genetic basis for intelligence.

- "Someone Is Stealing the Great Throne Rooms of the Galaxy" (Space Cadets, 2006) involves an intelligent, but pun loving, hamster space cadet chasing a group of thieves.

- "Uncle Alf" (Analog, 2002) presents an ardent military policeman with the twin problems of an agent of sedition and languid associates. He writes several letters to his beloved niece.

- "The Scarlet Band" (Analog, 2006) brings a noted London private detective and his faithful companion to Atlantis to assist the local police.

These stories are tales of alternate realities. Some are science fiction -- the ones based on real history -- and others are fantasy. Several are pastiches of famous literary works.

Recommended for fans of Turtledove and for anyone else who enjoys tales of historical trivia, human nature, and a bit of humor.

-Arthur W. Jordin
2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
A strong collection (a review of the audiobook) 20 April 2011
By DWD's Reviews - Published on Amazon.com
Format: MP3 CD
Tantor audio
Read by Todd McLaren
14.5 hours

Called a "Master of Alternate History" by Publishers Weekly, Harry Turtledove continues on that track with a set of 12 short stories. Topics and eras range from pre-history to the Peloponnesian War to the Byzantine Empire to World War II and two stories set in modern times. All of these stories have appeared in other publications.

This collection begins and ends with two stories about Atlantis, a topic he has explored more deeply in a trilogy. "Audubon in Atlantis" is the first story that Turtledove published about Atlantis. The famed 19th century naturalist John James Audubon has traveled to Atlantis to catalog some of its unique wildlife. Turtledove introduces his alternate world, including basics of the history of Atlantis and he introduces the House of Universal Devotion, a religion that is most analogous to the Mormon Church in regular history. Turtledove's focus on laying down the ground rules for makes the first half of the story a bit tiresome. It does pick up once Audubon is in the field.

The last story, "The Scarlet Band" is chronologically Turtledove's last story about Atlantis. In the story, Athelstan Helms and Dr. James Walton, the world famous detective duo (modeled after Holmes and Watson), are summoned to Atlantis to investigate a series of murders of prominent citizens who have been openly critical of the House of Universal Devotion. It is a fine ending to the collection, even if the murder is a bit too easily solved.

As in any collection, the quality varies. "Bedfellows" is a tiresome story once the gimmick is understood in the first minute, but it goes on for another 10 minutes. "News From the Front" is an alternate history of World War II told through headlines and snippets of editorials. Roosevelt is savaged in the press for failing to foresee the attack on Pearl Harbor and America's will to fight sags so low that it ends up suing for peace, much like the Japanese Empire had hoped in their original plans for the war in our timeline. The premise is interesting, but the headline/editorial format loses its punch and it tends to drag.

On the other hand, "Catcher in the Rhine" and "Someone is Stealing the Great Throne Rooms of the Galaxy" are both quite fun. "Catcher" is a play on J.D. Salinger's famed character Holden Caulfield. Caulfield is visiting Germany and he gets caught up in a bit of magical time travel. Turtledove captures Caulfield's voice perfectly. "Throne Rooms" is a pure comic bit of science fiction (and the only story in the collection that is not alternate history - it is set in the future). A giant sentient hamster is sent by the Star Patrol to investigate a series of thefts of throne rooms (and their accompanying antechambers) providing plenty of laugh out loud moments.

"Farmers' Law" and "The Genetics Lecture" are middle of the road stories. The former is a straightforward murder mystery set in a rural village in the Byzantine Empire and the latter is a Twilight Zone-esque very short story (about 6 minutes long) that, unfortunately, telegraphed its punch line.

"Uncle Alf" is set in France in 1929. But, in this world, the German Empire has won World War I and a 40-year-old Hitler is part of the German army occupying France. He is dedicated to rooting out socialism and in seducing his 21-year-old half-niece through a series of letters. The story is told through those letters. Although the incestual seduction aspect of the story is based on strong historical supposition, that fact does nothing to ease the creepy feeling that pervades the whole story.

The three strongest stories are all quite different from one another. "The Daimon" is set in the Peloponnesian War and the only difference is that Sokrates decides to participate in the invasion of Syracuse. In history, this campaign turned into a disaster, but Sokrates is able to offer advice to Alkibiades, the mercurial fair-haired young general who led the invasion. This advice causes Athens to win the entire war and, in the process lose their democracy to a tyrannical Alkibiades. Sokrates lives long enough to regret his advice as Alkibiades consolidates the Greek city states under his power in order to launch an invasion of Persia like Alexander the Great did nearly a century later. Those who are familiar with the Peloponnesian War will especially appreciate the ironic comments and situations that arise in this story.

"The Horse of Bronze" is a simple story of centaurs discovering men, but it is so much more. If you are a fan of Aristotle or enjoy thinking about the concepts behind his "Theory of Forms" (Turtledove introduces the theory in the earlier story "Daimon") you will enjoy this story of the arrival of men in a world filled with Centaurs, Nuggies, Satyrs, Sirens and Sphinxes.

"Occupation Duty" is set in modern day Gaza. The story is about troops going on patrol in an armored personnel carrier in a hostile, conquered territory. However, this is not about Israel and the Palestinians. Instead it is the "Philistinians" and the Moabites. In this history, Goliath beat David and Israel is nothing but a distant, ancient memory. The fight scenes are first rate and the irony of the same fighting going on in the same territory for the same reasons with different nations is quite good. Throw in a solid description of a world with no monotheistic religions and a tantalizing peek at this new world's politics and I found myself wishing he had fleshed this story out into a novel.

Todd McLaren's narration of these stories was exceptional. He delivers a variety of voices and tones - everything from American southern accents to a variety of British accents to Hitler's German accent. He even catches Alkibiades' famed lisp and you can hear the treachery in his voice as he crushes his opponents. Very impressive and enjoyable work throughout.
an accurate portrayal of events 20 Dec. 2014
By John W Moulton - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition
Some times it is hard to keep reading because the events are so well described, and we know that the war will continue for years. That said, I appreciate the fact that the author gives such a human face to all the characters, regardless of the side of hostility.
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