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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars The Atlantean Revolution, 16 Jun 2010
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This review is from: The United States of Atlantis (Mass Market Paperback)
Second in a series of books from Harry Turtledove, who writes a lot of alternate history novels, telling of the continent of Atlantis. This series takes known history from the middle ages on and writes about how things might have turned out if there was a huge continental sized land mass in the middle of the atlantic ocean, in between what we know as Britain and America.

The story began in Opening Atlantis and that covered the first few centuries of life there, seen through the eyes of one family and it's descendants. This book can be gotten into though if you haven't read the first one, as it stands pretty much on it's own and there's enough exposition to bring new readers up to speed.

Alternate histories can also parallel real histories to a great extent, and what this does is tell the tale of the American Revolution as it it had happened on Atlantis. With the locals tired of the taxes of the British King, they finally rebel and fight for their own independence. One war hero [who featured in the previous book] ends up leading the army.

It's a tricky war, fought in times with no satellites and mobile communications so neither side can ever be entirely sure where their opponents are and what they are up to. All this plus the fact that the locals have to fight with poorly equipped and untrained recruits, and in some rather tricky landscapes, is well described. This is war as it would have been at the time.

The writer always produces very readable prose, and manages the same here, making for pages that turn quickly enough. His characters here do have his usual tendency to engage in various moral debates about the unfairness of life and other issues, but it does go with the situation they are in.

Not a spectacular read, but a solid and generally entertaining one. One plot strand at the end exists to set up events that will come into play in the next book Liberating Atlantis.

Some may wish to note this features one bit of strong language and the occasional adult situation, although the violence of battle depicted here never comes close to being gory or gratuitous.
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Paul Tapner
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Location: poole dorset england

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