I enjoyed this in print many years ago and have enjoyed the recorded version. Looking forward to the rest of the series. You aren't going to leave me hanging? (part 1 of the "Worldwar" series released; part 1 of the next series "Colonization" released?)
Unless you have a deep interest in extra-terrestrial aliens who look like lizards and speak poor English, you might find some of Mr. Turtledove's other alternative histories of more interest (The American Empire trilogy, for example). This book just seems rather silly.
I wanted to give this book a chance and I'm glad I did even though it's definitely not my cup of tea. It's not a bad book at all in my opinion and I can see how some would really like it. The writing is solid and the narration is excellent. Unfortunately, the alternate historical angle just isn't firing on all cylinders for me.
I think I'd have liked the story better if it were written from a more modern day perspective instead of from an alternate history point of view. Personally, I find the aliens somewhat unimaginative and it also doesn't make sense to me why aliens that can fly to and invade other worlds are not more advanced technologically from earth's world war 2 era technology.
More importantly, the focus is split up on so many characters that I just don't find myself caring about any of them enough after listening to an entire book to want to continue.
So, for me, that adds up to an okay story but not one I want to spend any further credits on. If you like more historical type scifi though, definitely give it a listen because it is well written and very well narrated.
I have really enjoyed some of Turtledove's other books, but this one was just so-so. I really didn't care about any of the characters and the plot was kind of predictable. Also, it's WAY too drawn-out, even for Turtledove.
I'll admit it, I didn't even finish the whole book. By the middle of part 4, I just couldn't listen any more. Normally, I'd soldier through and finish it just to finish, but I couldn't even do that.
I find this a very interesting view of an alternative history, with Earth invaded right in the middle of WW II.
The switching POV's take a little getting used to.
The one irritation is the narrator. He kept pronouncing Cairo IL the same as the Egyptian Capital. All of the POW's he represented in the town pronounced it the same way even though they were all Illinois residents and at least one was a life-long Cairo resident.. The problem is that NOBODY in Illinois pronounces it that way. All Illinoisans pronounce it KAY-ROW.
Just as there was a Romeo and Juliet in the 1830's but when Juliet was renamed Joliet to honor Louis Jolliet in 1845, Romeo acknowledged the busted romance by renaming itself Romeoville instead.
Could you imagine the Blues Brothers with a "Juliet Jake" instead of "Joliet Jake"?
But beyond that so far after 10 hours into the book that is the major irritant by the narrator.
Another minor gaff by the Narrator is his representation of Enrico Fermi. He seemed to become confused since there was a Swedish scientist in their meeting at the University of Chicago and he seemed to overlap the Swedish accent into Fermi's supposed Italian accent. It sounded kind of funny having a half Swedish and half Italian accent for Fermi.
When I first read this book it had a different title and author. It was 1943 by Newt Gingrich. I have compared the two books side by side they are identical. But be that as it may, the story is interesting but a little farfetched. The technology of the Lizards is too primitive; they have starships capable of launching an interstellar invasion but only have 1990’s weapons systems (jets, tanks, artillery etc). But I still enjoy the story and would recommend it to others
This was my first exposure to Harry Turtledove and I liked the way he wove the tale. I do wish though that he tried to bring this tale to an end instead of leaving you hanging. If I had known this was to just be a cliff hanger to get you to buy the next book I probably wouldn't have bought it. After spending over 20 hours listening, I think it would only be fair to have the story wrap up. Especially since the next book is NOT available as an audio book. The writing was great and I will end up getting the other books when they become available but I did end up feeling just a little cheated.
Good premise, good characters and character development, lots of stories within stories, but the book ended abruptly. After investing all the time to listen to the book I felt absolutely cheated. I would recommend that Harry Turtledove finish the story and republish.