Kirkus Star


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Following his fine Code of the Lifemaker (1983), Hogan steps up with an ambitious, expertly-handled, mind-boggling alternate-worlds yarn. By 2025, the world has evolved into a peaceful, egalitarian utopia; here you see, Hitler never rose to power, WW II never happened, and neither a Cold War nor a nuclear confrontation developed! But, the world's oldest, richest, most powerful, least democratic families aren't happy; so, to improve their life style, they band together, secretly build a time machine, and open a gate back to 1925. Their idea is to foster Nazism by providing expertise and atom bombs; then, once Hitler has created a suitably totalitarian world-state, the bad guys from 2025 will simply move in and take over. So, in the alternate world begun in 1925, Hitler wins WW II; by the year 1975, America alone survives as a beleaguered outpost of democracy--and the final attack by the Axis powers is near. Is there any hope? Well, among the experts sent back from 2025 to help the Nazis are some fervent democrats, including mysterious operative Claud Winslade and scientist Kurt Scholder. Escaping to America, they obtain government help to construct another time-gate--connecting 1975 with 1939! So the good guys dispatch a team to 1939, with politicians to help Churchill and F.D.R. rally the free world against the Nazi threat, scientists to enlist Einstein, Fermi et al. in perfecting the time-gate system and in developing an atom bomb, and commandos to assault the Nazis' time-gate to 2025. Fascinating notions, then, and nonstop plot twists in a taut, gripping narrative: a bravura performance that sf fans and WW II buffs alike will find irresistible.

Pub Date: Oct. 1st, 1985
Publisher: Bantam