Read Tilting the Balance by Harry Turtledove Online


NO ONE COULD STOP THEM--NOT STALIN, NOT TOGO, NOT CHURCHILL, NOT ROOSEVELT . . . The invaders had cut the United States virtually in half at the Mississippi, vaporized Washington, D.C., devastated much of Europe, and held large parts of the Soviet Union under their thumb.But humanity would not give up so easily. The new world allies were ruthless at finding their foe's weaNO ONE COULD STOP THEM--NOT STALIN, NOT TOGO, NOT CHURCHILL, NOT ROOSEVELT . . . The invaders had cut the United States virtually in half at the Mississippi, vaporized Washington, D.C., devastated much of Europe, and held large parts of the Soviet Union under their thumb.But humanity would not give up so easily. The new world allies were ruthless at finding their foe's weaknesses and exploiting them.Whether delivering supplies in tiny biplanes to partisans across the vast steppes of Russia, working furiously to understand the enemy's captured radar in England, or battling house to house on the streets of Chicago, humankind would never give up.Yet no one could say when the hellish inferno of death would stop being a war of conquest and turn into a war of survival--the very survival of the planet . . ....

Title : Tilting the Balance
Author :
Rating :
ISBN : 9780345420572
Format Type : Paperback
Number of Pages : 478 Pages
Status : Available For Download
Last checked : 21 Minutes ago!

Tilting the Balance Reviews

  • Mike (the Paladin)
    2019-04-21 03:12

    Yeah I know if you read my 2 star rating for the first in this series you probably wonder why I tried the second. I said it there. It's a great idea...unfortunately they just aren't very good books. I wish they were. The idea of a group of long lived slowly changing aliens (their civilization has changed little in 50,000 years) arriving expecting to find mounted horse warriors but instead finding the world in the middle of WWII is inspired. It could have been so good.... Instead we get a soap opera. This idea could make a great book, maybe someday someone will write one.I weep.

  • Johnny
    2019-04-18 02:02

    Anyone who follows my reviews and synopses of the books I read would know that I have a bias against the epic storytelling style where points of view skip around like flies on a garbage dump. Such a perspective runs the risk of having me lose interest when some of the characters don’t really seem compelling. I occasionally get this feeling in George R. R. Martin’s A Song of Ice and Fire series (though I haven’t stopped reading it), but Martin has some characters that are strong enough to bring me back. So, it’s easy to see why I liked the idea of Harry Turtledove’s epic of alternate history, WorldWar, where the earth is facing invasion and potential conquest from a superior (but ultra-conservative, reactionary) alien race that disrupts World War II and forces Allies and Axis to align against the “Lizards.”In the first volume of the series, WorldWar: In The Balance, my personal feeling was that the thesis undergirding the series was fascinating (superior weaponry with limited intelligence and, ultimately, a logistics problem versus inferior weaponry with superior intelligence and superior (albeit underground) logistics) but many of the characters weren’t interesting enough to keep my full attention while others were intriguing but, perhaps, underused. Let me go on record that WorldWar: Tilting The Balance doesn’t offer that problem to me. I really began to empathize with various cases of addiction, betrayal, courage, death, fear, loneliness, and reactions to gender/racial discrimination experienced by the characters on both sides of the conflict. Further, Turtledove not only manages to make me care about certain characters on both sides, but he masterfully uses what happens to them to make me care about their deaths. Yes, there are significant deaths in this book. Deaths that I regret because I wanted to read more about the characters (I won’t reveal which ones) in the future and deaths that I regret because of what they do to the other characters I care about. I also felt like Turtledove really captured the period culture better than in the first volume of the series. In spite of the science-fiction elements, one really experienced the limitations of that era.Most significantly, as the title of the novel implies, the tactics (and to some degree the technology) of the defenders of earth have improved enough to give them an underdog’s chance in battles while still being overmatched. Also, I felt like there were many more action sequences in this novel, making the skipping around more bearable. And the action sequences were superb. I loved the way Turtledove managed to blend actual WWII armored tactics into reasonably adapted tactics against this superior foe. In some ways, it was like when lightly armored tanks had to attempt to slow down the superior armor of the Soviet tanks on the historical eastern front and when lightly armored U.S. and British tanks faced Rommel’s better armor in North Africa. The historical tankers had to adapt and that’s what is happening throughout WorldWar: Tilting The Balance. Further, there was a significant amount of maskirova (Russian for camouflage or subterfuge) that took place in several of the covert and commando operations which took place in this novel. At times, it felt like the defenders of earth were masterfully finessing a card in a game of Bridge. And, at times, one saw where an apparent masterstroke succeeded not so much because of the plan as because of the reactionary mindset or herb-induced hubris of the invaders. Most impressive to me was how Turtledove managed to deal with the cost of diversions and stalling tactics in terms of human lives. Too many times, I’ve felt like fiction writers (and even to some extent, historians) have glossed over the cost of holding a position until the master tactic could be exercised or providing a convincing feint. Frankly, some of the action scenes in this book seemed so realistic that I forgot I was reading an alternate history. I thought I was vicariously experiencing the real thing.Finally, the secret of making something as epic as this work can be signaled in terms of “Relationships, relationships, relationships.” In order for me to care about characters, they have to care about other people. Broken, complicated, new, and old relationships are fecund in this volume. I smiled, I hurt, and I could identify with many of them. And they aren’t just the stereotypical “ships passing in the night” relationships, either. These are compelling and complex relationships, but to say more would be to offer spoilers.At first, I thought this series offered more in ideas than in execution. Now, I think it is an incredible story that defines alternate history even more than some of my favorite books by Turtledove. I liked Shakespeare as a spy in The Phoenix and the Turtle and I experienced some good moments in his American Civil War Guns of the South reinvention, but this series is my favorite alternate history so far.

  • Ahmed
    2019-04-22 05:53

    Review of the First and Second books.This series, I imagine, is self-consciously styled after Tolstoy's "War and Peace".Also, it is not the sort of series where a book can stand alone and provide any sort of meaningful conclusion. The "Balance" is just one big book, broken for length, not plot.The "Balance" is the story of a war, drawn out across several years and numerous characters. The war is WWII, with the added twist of an alien invasion midway through. So, it is an alternate-history novel with a science-fiction twist.This bears repeating: the science-fiction component is just a twist. The aliens psychology is anthropomorphic, and they even look quite humanoid (despite being egg-laying lizard-like beings!). The realization of technical details is a little shoddy. Also, the historical development of technology is mixed up in certain places. Things get shoddier as the series advances, too.One example of shoddy technological history, I think, is the conspicuous use of audio recording as a plot device in the first and second books. This is historically inaccurate, as the first audio tapes were developed in Nazi Germany toward the end of WWII, and used to record Hitler, then broadcast his speeches so he wouldn't have to be at the radio station. Later, they were adopted by US radio stations. Before that, audio recording quality was sub-par and quite recognizably not-live.The characterization is good, but not outstanding, and a few characters are practically interchangeable. More variety here would have been welcome.In the second book, characterizations gets derailed even more. Worse luck.The pace is rather slow, drawn out, really, even stretched thin in certain parts. Every now and then, skipping a few pages (representing one character's PoV) is quite OK. The situation is even worse in the second book.Overall, OK. I think I'll need to read more before forming a more definitive judgement; like War and Peace, this is really one giant novel split apart for convenience. Unlike War and Peace (which I'd never read), I think this one gets old and crappy rather quickly...

  • Chip
    2019-03-29 05:54

    This was my first book that I've read from Turtledove and I'm really impressed. He creates a very detail alternative world set during World War II. He makes use of many real-life people to intertwine between his rich other characters. People are thrown into tough war situations where they are battling for their lives. Yet in between, the struggle to carry on their lives the best they can. Since this is the 2nd in the series, I look forward to going back and reading the 1st (and continuing with the rest of the series).

  • James
    2019-04-13 00:06

    Turtledove continues his story of an alien invasion of Earth disrupting World War II and leading the Axis and Allies to put aside the war to fight the aliens together. He carries forward the characters and subplots he started in the first volume and continues the what-if and if-then process exploring how our history could have been changed by an development like this.

  • Justin Robinson
    2019-04-02 21:55

    More of the same. That's a compliment.

  • Neil
    2019-04-20 03:05

    Thoughts while reading:It is funny, but on page 25, Jager thinks to himself how odd it was that he and Ludmilla consummated their desire for each other on June 22, 1941. It is like the author is trying to retroactively state when the Lizards invaded the Earth [either he forgot when he intended the aliens to have invaded or he had enough fans of the first book asking in which year of World War II did it take place, so he added that date for people to stop asking him]. The problem with this date is that it does not match up with events and comments in the first book [as well as how the second book starts out]. Had the Lizards invaded in early to mid 1941, the Japanese would never have attacked Pearl Harbor or any other islands or territories in the Pacific Ocean, yet comments are made about the Japanese having attacked Pearl Harbor and other islands. Comments are also made how the Americans and Japanese hate each other as much as the Germans and Russians hate each other; if the Japanese had not attacked Pearl Harbor, that hate would not be there. So the author has created a bit of a dilemma/paradox, here. Ah, well. It is kind of funny, but I have come across an inordinate amount times where the phrase 'tilting the balance' is used in the book. I can't quite decide the author is trying to be funny, or if it's just the way it's 'working out' in the book. So many people say it! And not even 'major' characters are saying it. Some minor ones say it, as well as 'background' characters. It's almost funny.The author is continuing his repetition of facts every few chapters [such as the U2 biplane surviving because it is primarily canvas and wood as opposed to metal] in this novel as he did the previous novel. It still makes me wonder if he's forgotten what he's written previously and repeats himself as a result. There is a lot of 'stuff' going on in each novel, as well as each chapter, so it is somewhat understandable.One of the nastiest descriptions I have ever read: Mud thin as bad diarrhea slopped over his boot tops and soaked his socks. What. The. Heck?!? It is horribly, graphically nasty and does a wonderful job describing how the rain is adversely affecting an infantry unit outside of Chicago. Blech! Cannot believe how much it makes my stomach churn! hahahah If I were wearing a hat, I would doff it in deference to the author's choice of verbiage.Just finished a part that was utterly stupid in the book. (view spoiler)[Jens rips on Christians and Christianity because he is in the great Mormon state of Utah. He equates Christianity with fascism and communism, that Christianity takes away all of your choices and does not allow you to use your head to think. Apparently because the Bible has moral laws and values and tells its adherents not to sin sexually, the author considers it to be some kind of travesty. Really? That is half-baked, [email protected]$$ stupid thinking on the part of this idiot scientist. Had he followed the simplest Biblical injunction involving sexual morality [no sex outside of marriage], he would never had caught an STD from some woman with whom he copulated outside of Denver, Colorado. So who's the idiot moron, Jens? I know, I know. It's just a book. It would be nice if authors were less hypocritical in their idiotic comments; perhaps if they showed 'the other side' and were a bit more balanced. Now there's a pipe dream! Hahahah! On the other hand, though, it fully represents how people refuse to take any kind of responsibility for their actions and choose to blame others for the consequences of their bad decisions. (hide spoiler)]------------------------------------------------------------------------So I just finished this book. It most assuredly ends with a bang! and not a whimper! (view spoiler)[Nuclear explosions will do that. (hide spoiler)]As others have said, this is the second book in a tetralogy in which aliens invade during World War II [that's not too much of a spoiler, is it?]. Parts of it move at a fast pace; other parts move glacially slow. This book seems to focus more on the various human elements and quite a bit less on the alien invaders. The author ignores historical facts for the convenience of the plot (view spoiler)[such as the Russians acquiring atomic weapons ahead of the other major powers (hide spoiler)]. Overall, I do not think his monkeying around with history adversely affects the story.The character development is interesting, I guess. Some of it is good/strong, some of it is pretty weak. Some of it seems cliche. He does have a lot going on in the book, so it really is probably only natural to have some parts be weaker than others [including characters].Barbara and Sam stay together; Jens eventually leaves because he cannot bear to see the two of them together any more. I had forgotten how Jens had acted after he finally meets up with his wife. I realize the revelation of what his wife has been doing and her current physical state would be a severe shock to the system, but the author still chose to have Jens make the horrible decisions he makes [including the potential-attempted rape of his former wife] prior to leaving Denver, Colorado, to visit Hanson, Washington. It is funny, but a part of me was still rooting for Jens to get his act together and to woo his wife back, right up until Jens became a monster. Relatively speaking, it seemed like a lot of [minor] characters died in this novel. Some of the deaths seemed rather pointless [but a lot of deaths seem this way in life], but it was still 'hard' to read about one or two characters I had come to 'care about' dying on the page as I was reading. So the author did a nice job making me care about these characters and their 'ultimate fate' in the novel. Overall, though, I did not care about too many characters in the novel.I really do not know what to say about this novel. It seems to bog down in several parts due to the lack of 'action' throughout the book. There are other parts [not enough of them!] that zip along. He creates at least three 'love triangles' in the book that I did not recognize the first time I read it. Obviously, there is the whole Barbara-Jens-Yeager thing he carried over from the first book. (view spoiler)[There is one involving Ludmilla, Jager's love/lover; it is Ludmilla-Shultz-Sholudenko, but Ludmilla has no interest in either Shultz or the NKVD man. And I forget the third one. hahahah I thought there was three; maybe it was just two. There is something along the lines of a triangle involving Tatiana-Jones-Bagnall, but that is more because Tatiana will bed whoever assists her in killing the most of her enemies as possible. Or maybe it was Embry and not Bagnall. (hide spoiler)]I did enjoy reading about Diocletian's Palace [the other novel in which I read about this Roman ruin was one of the Percy Jackson books from the 'second' series]. It sounds like a remarkable place, and I would love to visit it sometime.There were battles in the book; it was just not 'action-packed' in my opinion. For being a book about a world war being waged against alien invaders, it seemed like very little fighting was ever actually done. We get mostly bombing runs and attacks from aircraft, it seemed like in the novel. Well, aircraft and artillery. There were two or three skirmishes between Lizard and German tanks. We know of American Shermans moving into position around and outside of Chicago, but we never learn how successful these tanks were against their Lizard-built opponents. There are some skirmishes between infantry units scattered throughout the novel. So my claim of 'nothing happens in the book' is a bit of an oversimplification; it just seemed less action-packed than the first novel.It is kind of funny, because I am unsure as to how much time takes place in each novel; at the same time, I do not know how much time has elapsed in between in each novel. I get the impression that a significant amount of time has passed both inbetween the first and second novel, and inbetween the covers of each novel. It would be nice if the author were to have interjected some kind of time frame so that the reader would have an idea of how much time has passed.I almost forgot! (view spoiler)[The Germans were actually further along than the Russians were with their nuclear program, but an industrial accident of sorts caused the German plant to suffer a catastrophic meltdown and many German scientists were killed. The Russians are not too far behind the Germans; they have enough to build one bomb with subsequent bombs not being built for another four to five years. Even Japan has joined the nuclear arms race, attempting to build their own nuclear weapons! It is crazy! The US of A is working with Great Britain to build atomic weapons. (hide spoiler)]It was a decent book. I am still glad that I read it.

  • Richard
    2019-03-28 05:06

    The second novel in the struggle against alien conquest advances several relationships. The close relations between men and women are stressed and shorn by war. The international relationships between the fighters of the powers at wars, first fighting each and other then fighting the aliens are deepened and examined by the soldiers working with their former foes. The relations between the world leaders start to twist toward a time when the aliens no longer vie for which species will control the planet. In short this is a novel of change.This is a good read.

  • Tex-49
    2019-04-17 00:50

    Continua la narrazione del precedente volume del ciclo, quasi fosse la seconda parte di uno stesso romanzo. L'interesse si mantiene alto ed è impossibile non continuare la lettura nel successivo volume!

  • Brad
    2019-04-03 03:14

    Another great book in this series.

  • Dkolacinski
    2019-04-09 23:03

    Harry Turtledove's greatest strength is making you care about his characters while moving an epic tale forewarned. He's halfway there.

  • eric quinn
    2019-03-27 06:11

    Quite a bit going onThere's a lot of things going on in the story, it keeps you turning the pages and wondering what's going to happen next.

  • Dan
    2019-04-08 02:01

    Turtledove seems to have wrestled his comma key into submission. Either that or he woke his editor up.

  • Sandra
    2019-04-02 06:11

    OK, so I have to admit that I picked up Book #2 in the Worldwar series. I was so completely annoyed with the first "book" that I was determined not to read any more. These are most definitely not stand-alone books, and at the end the many plot threads are almost all left hanging. I think the problem is that there are so many subplots that the only constant is the bad guys -- the Lizards -- and so even if one of the good guys gets killed or a battle gets won, there are still all sorts of things going on in other parts of the world that are completely unresolved.What happened to Jens? How about Teerts (the Lizard prisoner of the Japanese, who is one of the three sympathetic bad-guy characters; the Japanese are portrayed as so rigid and self-sacrificing that they are completely unconcerned with the well-being of prisoners, except insofar as the prisoners are useful to them, which I understand was pretty much the case in World War II)? We have actions in Poland/Germany/Croatia (sort of combined), Russia (sometimes overlaps with Germany), the United States (mostly Chicago and Denver so far), and Japan. Oh, and China. Don't forget China. And the starships of Lizards, in addition to their troops on the planet. Oh . . . wait . . . London, too. But it's fairly entertaining stuff, and Turtledove appears to have an impressive grasp of the minutae pertaining to World War II and the various cultures at the time, personalities of leaders, norms, technology, and that sort of thing. I must say that I am usually uninterested in long descriptions of battles, mostly because I quickly lose track of directions and descriptions of landscapes and really have no imaginative sense of what's going on unless I go back to the beginning of scenes and really, really, really pay attention -- and even then, my grasp of spacial relationships is never all that good, so I almost always start to skim because all the complicated action quits making any sense. But somehow Turtledove is more straightforward in his descriptions and I have no problem whatsoever following what's going on. I'm still not going to change my low rating of the first book, because it really should be Worldwar: Part I, so that it's clear that this is not a book in the usual sense of the word. It's a long book divided into three sections, or maybe five (shudder; I haven't looked closely and I was only given three), presumably so that people will buy all of them. And it's Turtledove's weakness; he just doesn't seem capable of the traditional multi-book format, where there's a clear plot with some kind of resolution, and there are further volumes that continue the same story line or theme, but with a new central plot device that will eventually conclude. We all know the type: The Lord of the Rings. The Chronicles of Narnia. Even the Game of Thrones books, which are somewhere in between (but I quit reading them because I realized that the series may never be concluded).So be warned: if you are going to read Worldwar, you need to commit to a lot of reading; don't go into it thinking you'll just read a volume any more than you would read the first third of War and Peace and then . . . just . . . stop.

  • Christian, Kelanth, Scala
    2019-03-30 00:02

    Il ciclo dell'invasione di Harry Turtledove, lo scrittore statunitense nato a Los Angeles nel 1949 che è comunemente considerato un autore di allostorie, è una saga fantascientifica che è stata scritta tra il 1994 e il 1996 e ambientata nel corso della seconda guerra mondiale, mescolando elementi storici e ucronici al tema dell'invasione aliena. Il ciclo è composto da quattro romanzi: "Invasione anno zero", "Invasione atto secondo", "Invasione atto terzo" e "Invasione atto finale". Dopo il ciclo dell'invasione la storia prosegue, con un salto narrativo di 25 anni, con il "Ciclo della colonizzazione". La mia recensione, abbraccerà l'intera saga.Siamo nei primi anni della seconda guerra mondiale. Una notte però appare sul cielo sopra il ghetto di Varsavia una luce. Tale luce rappresenta l'arrivo di una razza aliena giunta sulla Terra per conquistarla. Gli alieni sono una razza di rettili alti 150-160 cm, apparentemente evolutasi da piccoli carnosauri come i velociraptor anche. Basando i piani di invasione sulla propria storia, gli alieni hanno inviato sonde-spia sulla terra (a circa 12 anni luce di distanza) ricevendone immagini del nostro pianeta fra l'anno 1000 e il 1200... La flotta di invasione (dotata di armi paragonabili a quelle del ventunesimo secolo terrestre: bombe atomiche, carri armati con motori a idrogeno e cannoni iperveloci, sofisticati caccia a reazione) era stata calcolata per sopprimere in pochi giorni una resistenza fatta da cavalieri in armatura dotati di picche e spade.I rettili invasori sono quindi letteralmente sconvolti quando ci trovano impegnati in un grande conflitto globale che vede l'uso di tecnologie marginalmente inferiori alle loro, sviluppate nei pochi secoli impiegati dalle loro navi per raggiungere la Terra. Inoltre, gli scienziati terrestri riescono a studiare e copiare alcuni esemplari di armi aliene catturate, causando improvvisi balzi in avanti della tecnologia terrestre. La storia si sviluppa attraverso un numero notevole di personaggi, dai soldati terrestri appartenenti a tutte le forze in campo, agli alieni fino ad arrivare alle persone comuni. Le loro storie si intrecciano in un susseguirsi di rivelazioni, segreti, colpi di scena e grandi battaglie. Turtledove, nell'inserire l'elemento dell'invasione esterna, stravolgerà completamente lo sviluppo della storia come noi la conosciamo.L'ucronìa è un tema della fantascienza che mi ha sempre entusiasmato e qui Turtledove, che è un maestro di tale pratica letteraria, dà il meglio di sè; molto ben congegnato, di un'originalità assoluta, per un'amante della storia alternativa questa serie è un must da leggereper la sua genialità.Poi, sicuramente nella lettura ci si imbatte in delle carenze letterarie, come qualche lettore ha giustamente sottolineato, ma si sta parlando sostanzialmente in dei verociraptor alieni che invadono la Terra, non di un libro di Proust. Quello che vuole il lettore è, secondo me, essere trasportato in un'altra realtà parallela, che lo faccia divertire e questa saga ci riesce in pieno. Un capolavoro di storia alternativa.

  • Lasse Laitinen
    2019-04-03 00:10

    In the case of Turtledove's Worldwar series, the first part had left me with an unspecified, a bit bothering feeling about the book, but I quite couldn't put my finger on it. Now after having read the second part I may be able to explain why these works didn't really fulfill my expectations. Turtledove describes events of a huge magnitude from a truly global perspective. Quite understandably, he alternates between the perspectives of different characters. They are both ordinary people and persons of influence and power. These characters are caught in the flux of events that face them in the war. The war itself, however, seems to drag on somewhat unsurprisingly, even slowly. Turtledove keeps repeating the same tactical and strategic considerations as fighting continues. Real war is foggy and messy, but reading war histories gives a more interesting, vivid and multifaceted picture of everything that is going on than Turtledove's narrative. He has several, different pieces in his puzzle, but the picture they make is a bit dull. Turtledove has an eye for the subtleties of politics and dynamics of alliances, but strategic political thingking is his weakness. In the real World Wars the Allies had to coordinate their actions, and new structures had to be created in order to get most out of joint fighting power. Jean Monnet's memoirs include interesting parts on these themes, from both World Wars. In Tilting the Balance this side is restricted to a couple of somewhat theatrical meetings of world leaders. Their best global strategy seems to be to fight as hard as possible on all fronts, everyone basically on their own.

  • Daniel Cornwall
    2019-04-10 02:15

    This book was better than Tilting the Balance, the first book in the WorldWar series that answers the question "What if aliens invaded in World War II?" It had all "what if" strengths of the first book and fewer gratuitous yet unerotic sex scenes. The named historical characters remained plausible. I particularly like the characterizations of Stalin and Molotov. The depiction of the various powers and ethic groups struggling to set aside their differences long enough to drive the aliens from our world are also done well.Two things keep me from giving this book four stars. One is a supposedly rational scientist reacting very disproportionately to difficulties in their life. I kept saying, "Really? You'd do that? Because of __?" The second thing was the repetition of certain facts every couple of chapters. The same facts that were repeated every couple of chapters in book one. For example, it's not too much of a spoiler to learn that U2 soviet biplanes were less likely to get shot down because their canvas bodies were harder to detect by radar. Or that it was important to stay near tree level because the aliens typically shot down anything that few higher. I hope I don't have to be reminded of these facts every time the pilot character is introduced in book three.But I was intrigued and entertained enough that I will indeed read the third book, "Upsetting the Balance." In fact, I'll be popping off to Listen Alaska Plus to borrow the e-book.

  • Larry McCloskey
    2019-04-05 23:58

    Former enemies, the Axis and Allies continue their struggle against the alien invasion. The spring has arrived and the aliens have broken out all over Europe and are driving across the plains in North America. Meanwhile, the superpowers of Earth continue their efforts to harvest the atom - the one weapon that may hold the aliens in check.The fighting is fast and furious and Turtledove shows a refreshing willingness to kill off entrenched characters, which heightens the drama. The awkward and contrived human interaction, though, grows and the second installment in the series makes it all the more clumsy. It's one thing to give depth to the characters instead of simply using them as window dressing for the story. It's another thing entirely to bog down a tale of war and desperation with love, loss and STDs. It's just not necessary and was a real distraction. At times, I almost walked away from this book. I'm glad I stuck it out, though, and Turtledove convinced me to stick with the series with one hell of a cliffhanger.

  • Al
    2019-03-26 05:46

    Volume 2 in the alternate history series. An alien race has arrived at earth, expecting to easily subjugate it for colonization. Their pre-arrival assessment of earth's military capabilities, however, is based on intergalactic observations at the time of the Dark Ages. Unfortunately for them, this intelligence is no longer valid since they arrive in the middle of WWII. Of course, they are astounded at what to them is the unbelievable rapid advancement in military capability. In response to the aliens' attack, the warring parties on earth join together, albeit painfully, to resist the invaders. Ironies abound, of course. Turtledove does well in depicting the frustration and bewilderment of the invaders as they find the feisty and surprisingly well-armed humans difficult to master, and he also effectively shows the confusion of various leaders and citizens of different countries trying to adapt to a sudden forced change in their loyalties and expectations.Not a literary masterpiece, but good fun.

  • Catherine
    2019-04-22 02:03

    I am unsure while I am still listening to this audio book series. The language is very dated, and some of the way races are referred to grates - but it IS set during the WWII period and race relations in certain parts of the world were very divided. I think I am still listening to this because of how some of the characters are developed. Regardless of what one thinks of them, you get to wondering what happens next. The premise of this 4-novel story is the repercussions of an alien invasion at the height of WWII. Would the warring nations band together to fight the aliens or would politics get in the way? If they do cooperate, how would this actually work out - for example, how well would RAF, SS, and Soviet and Soviet NKVD officers cooperate? This is one example, there are many. In this world Pearl Harbor had not happened - though it was close when the invasion occurred.

  • Chad J
    2019-04-07 03:08

    I have found the entire World War Series interesting and entertaining. I do find that Turtledove tends to repeat information in his books to often, its not like his readers can't remember information from one book to another!Also Turtledove should stop writing sex dialog. Sorry buddy, you are just not very good at that.What Turtledove is great at is presenting history from an alturnate reality. I find the books captivating and wanting more. Could stand a little less of hearing (And I Great You Superior Sr) but hey its just the way Turtledove writes.Overall a great series that will keep you coming back for more.

  • Holden Attradies
    2019-04-01 23:52

    This volume was worlds better than the first. It was paced way more evenly and ended in the perfect place. As the book goes on you really get the feeling of this war grinding on and the aliens starting to lose moment while very gradually, even while they lose, you can feel more than see how the humans are starting to pick up some momentum. The characters were a lot more believable and the details of the war, at least for me, were a lot more enjoyable. It felt, much more than the first volume, that you were seeing the bigger picture of this war through many small pictures here and there.

  • Todd
    2019-04-12 22:49

    Okay, this is the 2nd book in the series, and while I'm enjoying the storyline and what is behind it all .... this one dragged along. I would say there are a few too many storylines to follow and as soon as he wraps up one ... he splits another to create an additional one to follow. And the action in this one dragged as well. It wasn't until the last quarter of the book that I really started to enjoy it and didn't want to put it down till I was done. And then it dropped off abruptly and was done. That was a downer as well.

  • Matteo Pellegrini
    2019-04-07 03:54

    Hanno spaccato in due gli Stati Uniti. Hanno devastato gran parte dell'Europa. Sono feroci, potenti, inarrestabili. Gli ebrei polacchi li accolgono come liberatori, ma l'illusione finisce nel sangue. Dall'altra parte del mondo, Washington è vaporizzata in qualche secondo. Ma l'umanità non è disposta a cedere, che si tratti di trasportare rifornimenti attraverso le steppe russe o di cercare di capire le armi strappate al nemico, o ancora di combattere per difendere le proprie città. La guerra per la sopravvivenza del pianeta è cominciata.

  • Brenton J.
    2019-04-22 03:49

    This series opened up a whole new world to me. It was the first alternate history type book I had ever read and at least for the few few in the series, it is the best. During one of the worst conflicts in the history of the world, aliens decide to invade. Alliances form in the most unlikely groups and heroes are born from the most unhero of people. This is a great series and I would recommend it to anyone. It did slow down towards the end of the series, but the first two or three books when the world is at war is just fantastic.

  • Jeffinstereo
    2019-04-15 21:46

    I like this book but it may be a one time read for me. The thing that really got me was the fact that the book is constantly repeating itself within characters. Example is how it (minor spoiler) CONSTANTLY has Sam Yeager talking about being a former baseball player and insistently talks about the division of the Jews/Russians and the Germans on the Russian Front. I get it, they don't like each other. It doesn't need to be repeated in every chapter from those POV characters though.Besides that, very good.

  • Christopher
    2019-04-14 22:00

    Humanity continues to battle the Alien "Race" and strange alliances are formed in this second volume of Turtledove's WorldWar Alt-history series. The scenes where aliens are captured by Japanese and not treated all the well (unsurprisingly) are interesting. The scenes where an American corporal is guarding/babysitting two captured aliens and teaching them baseball? Less so. So bit of a mixed bag here. But still enjoyable enough as the Aliens are still sufficiently alien and their increasing addiction to ginger makes for some interesting plot developments.

  • Alan Smith
    2019-04-12 01:14

    I like Turtledove's alternate worlds, I really do. I especially like the way he incorporates realistic details from our own universe, using "real" people as alternate characters. However, I think the "Worldwar" series by far the weakest. Having lizard invaders is just too far from reality to grab me as much as the others.Having said that, it's a stonking idea, well written and with a few twists and turns to keep the reader glued. "Tilting the Balance" is the second in the series, and though the pace falls off a bit from book #1, I still think it's worth any SF fan's time.

  • Alex Lee
    2019-04-03 23:54

    This is less a full standalone novel than a piece in the middle of a series. The writing is still passable, but the flipping point of view is Turtledove's attempt to retain the "epic" scale so that we get a sense of what is happening overall worldwide. The characters are little more than foils to show the limits of who they are as racial and cultural differences. Beyond the inevitable ending -- there is really very little to recommend this book as a book, unless you are interested in the series.

  • Bryan457
    2019-03-26 00:14

    Part 2 of the alien attack at the height of World War II. The concept is fascinating. Parts of the book are compelling and other parts are pretty dull, but I couldn't stop myself from continuing to the next page and chapter to see what happened next. Turtledove has also started killing off some of the massive cast of characters. Maybe he got as tired of writing about them as I was of reading about them. I want to pick up the next book and see what happens next in spite of the slow pace.