eah, you read that right. Days. Plural.
This one’s a Harry Turtledove epic, an alternate history tale of the attack on Pearl Harbor. And like everyone who’s ever played the old Avalon Hill game Victory in the Pacific, now we get a chance to see what happens when the Japanese go for a third attack run on Pearl. And, oh, they happen to have an invasion force this time.
As one would expect from Turtledove, we have a number of different characters (becuase one character can’t carry the POV for an epic this size). We have an American artileryman (who becomes a POW (was that a spoiler?)). And an American Aviator (also now a POW and spoiler). And a housewife. And a Japanese fisherman (with his two Americanized sons (one of whom is dating a white girl)). And a surfer. And a Japanese bomber pilot (as well as another guy who is a fighter pilot). And then the ocassinal ghost-haunting of famous people as well. So a lot goes on, justifying the thickness of this (and, warning, it isn’t the only part. This is Turtledove, so there is at least one more).
It was pretty well written – I guess I should admit that I devowered it in one day, just reading for hours, chapter after chapter. The initial Japanese success. The ensuing carrier battle. The land battle down the lenght of Hawaii. The Japanese efforts to lock down this base as a shield against their efforts in the Pacific.
And something I’d never thought of – the food situation. Yes, Hawaii at this time has two priciple crops – sugarcane and pinapples (all for export). And everything it needs comes from the mainland. So the Japanese are forced to furiously grow their own food, to convert the fields over while plowing up front yards, to starve their POWs and suffer while gas, oil, everything runs short. I’d never considered it and actually found myself mumbling “uh oh” when I realized this problem.
So, yes, it’s Turtledove – as adictive as crack, and in series form, about as damn near expensive.
But did I like it? Well, tonight after we go to dinner, I’m going to look for the next book in the series.