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Monday, May 25, 2015

Straits of Hell by Taylor Anderson

Genre: Alternate History

Setting: On an alternate version of Earth, during the World War Two era.

First Sentence: If I have discovered one genuinely profound truth in all my travels and adventures, it is this: mercy is a moral construct that does not exist in nature.

This novel is the ninth in the continuing story of Captain Matthew Reddy and the crew of the
USS Walker - the destroyermen.

Several years ago the USS Walker (DD-163) sailed into a strange storm, and was somehow transported to a different version of Earth.  Soon, they joined forces with the peaceable, lemur-like "Cats" to battle the evil reptilian Grik.

With each successive novel, the author expands the scope of this strange world.  We learn that there are several groups of humans who have arrived from different points in time: from the dark ages to the WWII era.

Generally, most of the humans join with the Destroyermen to battle the Grik.  But, some groups have their own agenda.

In this chapter of the series the author adds some new wrinkles to the tale.

It seems that not all of the humans on this version of Earth have come from the same historical time line.

There are some pretty advanced groups who are practicing politics on a global scale.  They have been watching the battles between the Grik and the Allies. Yet they refuse to get involved.

There is lots of great battle action in this novel.  On the Eastern front, the Allies battle the fanatical forces of the Dominion.  The Dominion are humans that practice a strange religion which seems to be a blend of the Spanish Inquisition and Aztec beliefs.  They are led by the diabolical Don Hernan.

In the East, the Allies continue to fight the Grik.  The Grik are in a state of internal turmoil.  With the death of their Celestial Mother they quarrel with each other over who will be the leader of all the Grik.

Additionally, the Allies and the Grik themselves are learning more about the true nature of the Grik race.

Once again, Anderson has delivered an action packed adventure.  There are great action scenes, both on land and sea.  And we learn a little bit more about the strange Earth the destroyermen are in.  I enjoy Anderson's easy to read style. The pages fly by and soon you've finished another great novel.

If you are interested in this book, I suggest that you start the series at the beginning.  Taylor uses a large cast of characters. The Lemurians and the Grik have oddly spelled names.  Fortunately, there is an extensive list of characters at the front of the book.

I truly enjoyed this novel and I eagerly await the next book in the series.



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