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Combining short fiction with speculative history, this entertaining book invites listeners to look at what didn't happen to gain a richer understanding of what did. What if Napoleon had become emperor of the United States? Could one faulty screw have altered America's atomic-bomb policy? If Lincoln had been assassinated during the Gettysburg Address, would the Confederate States have remained a separate country?
Commentary from leading historians following each story is as fascinating as the stories themselves.
Disappointing read as a lover of all things historical. Stories were too big a stretch and were focused on individuals rather than broader global impacts of historical changes. Bummer since I enjoy these kinds of historical excercises and this one didnt stand up.
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The one good thing about long drives... You can plow through audio books. This fictional "what if" alternative history contains some interesting ideas for its scenarios, but as the historian written critiques that follow each story point out, they are a little far fetched. What if Napoleon, rather than going to France to set up his empire, had come to North America and established instead in the Louisiana territory with Davey Crockett, Sam Houston, and Andrew Jackson as his top General. Instead of Waterloo, Wellington fights him at New Orleans. Anyway, while not boring, there's better alternative history out there.
0 of 1 people found this review helpful