Thursday, January 10, 2013

Book Review - Himmler's War

Besides gaming I love to read.  In fact I think that loving to read is a must if you want to play rpgs.  I read mostly science fiction, although my tastes are varied.  For a few years I have been recording the books that I have read.  Since I want to share things on this blog, I guess I will share a book that I recently read.

Himmler's War is an alternate history novel written by Robert Conroy.  If you are not familiar with the genre, alternate history involves "what if" scenarios depicting what would happen if historical events went differently.  Harry Turtledove is an author who has written a whole series of books based on the idea of the South winning the American Civil War.  Robert Conroy has written other books in this genre that I have read.  I enjoyed his other books and I thought the tank on the cover was cool, so I decided to give this book a try.

The main idea of Himmler's War is that Hitler is killed in a bombing raid in 1944.  Heinrich Himmler, head of the SS, takes control of the Reich.  With Hitler out of the picture the German army can finally make rational military decisions and the war continues.  There are also hints of a German super-weapon in the making.

I like history and I really like alternate history.  I like Robert Conroy because unlike some other authors I read he focuses on the historical characters and doesn't insert a bunch of awkward sex scenes into his book.  Unfortunatly, Mr. Conroy's editor must have asked him to insert a bunch of sex scenes into this book.  There were a ton in Himmler's War.  It is like someone said, "Do you know what readers want after this scene with Eisenhower?  A steamy sex scene!"  There were so many that it detracted from the main plot.

The overall book was ok.  I would give it 3 out of 5 stars.  If you are a fan of alternate history I would read another one of Mr. Conroy's books instead of this one.  Try Red Inferno: 1945, which deals with a  war between the US and USSR right after WWII.  That book makes me want to run mash-up game of GURPS WWII/Twilight 2000.  As for Himmler's War, I got some enjoyment out of it but I will be taking my copy to the used book store.