World on Fire
by W.D. Laremore
Trafford Publishing

"Assassinating Hitler won't do the job. We have to kill all of the original party members."

Jameson Dodge and Emmet Hammerton live in the U.S. in late September, 1974. Both of their parents live in Nottingham, England in early July, 1944. What do they have in common besides genes? Both generations live under Nazi oppression. The Americans living under Nazi rule in the eastern U.S. resulting from a German preemption of the D-Day invasion of France. Their parents live in the days just before D-Day, when Nazi soldiers land en masse in England. Can Jameson successfully use his newly invented time machine to revisit 1936 and alter this chain of events?

Told in short, action-filled chapters that alternate between 1974 and 1944, the plot unfolds in each timeline as the Nazis do their best to stop it. A well-drawn cast of characters flesh out the tale of American GIs in 1944 England with a close focus on their interactions with young English women. The author has extensively researched this particular era and is able to realistically describe the dynamics of the day. The 1974 characters are much more speculative, but provide the main impetus for dramatic tension. Themes of heroism, sacrifice, and courage pitted against cruelty, fanaticism, and evil naturally emerge from this type of situation in an alternative historical novel with science fiction elements. The author's style is quite readable while remaining unique enough to intrigue. The intricacies of time travel and concomitant shifts in historical chains of causation might be challenging to follow at times. However, the emphasis is on action, allowing one to glide past the details. The denouement feels somewhat abrupt and capable of fuller development, but the story is nevertheless thought-provoking and well told.

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