C.J. Sansom rewrites history in a thrilling novel that dares to imagine Britain under the thumb of Nazi Germany.
1952. Twelve years have passed since Churchill lost to the appeasers and Britain surrendered to Nazi Germany. The press, radio, and television are controlled. British Jews face ever greater constraints.
But Churchill's Resistance soldiers on. And in a Birmingham mental hospital, fragile scientist Frank Muncaster holds a secret that could alter the balance of the global struggle forever.
Civil Servant David Fitzgerald, a spy for the Resistance, is given the mission to rescue Frank and get him out of the country. Hard on his heels is Gestapo agent Gunther Hoth, a brilliant, implacable hunter of men, who has Frank and David's innocent wife Sarah directly in his sights.
Dominion by C.J. Sansom
"The whole fury and might of the enemy must very soon be turned on us. Hitler knows that he will have to break us in this island or lose the war. If we can stand up to him all Europe may be free, and the life of the world will move forward into broad, sunlit uplands; but if we fail, then the whole world, including the United States, and all that we have known and cared for, will sink into the abyss of a new dark age made more sinister, and perhaps more prolonged, by the lights of a perverted science." WINSTON CHURCHILL, 18 JUNE 1940
All events that take place after 5:00 p.m. on 9 May 1940 are imaginary.
The Cabinet Room, 10 Downing Street, London
4.30 p.m., 9 May 1940
Churchill was last to arrive. He knocked once, sharply, and entered. Through the tall windows the warm spring day was fading, shadows lengthening on Horse Guards Parade. Margesson, the Conservative Chief Whip, sat with Prime Minister Chamberlain and Foreign Secretary...
In times of greatest stress and danger, the mettle of a people is displayed in individual acts of great courage. And so we discover in the resolution of this exciting thriller, which is also a telling mirror on human nature. Sanson shows, in his altered history, that people are able to rise above fear, to reach for integrity, and to sacrifice their own welfare and even their lives for the common good.
(Reviewed by Bob Sauerbrey).
Full Review (1146 words).
Sarah Johnson, editor/publisher of Historical Novels Review, speaks to the complicated nature of historical fiction: "The obvious definition that comes to mind is that historical fiction is simply 'fiction set in the past.' But the reality is, however, that almost everyone - and this includes readers, authors, publishers, agents, and the press - seems to have his or her own idea of what historical fiction is, and also what historical fiction should be. When you become involved with the field, you begin to learn that above all, historical fiction is a genre of controversy and contradiction." Johnson offers one working definition of a historical novel (which she uses to determine the books Historical Novels Review will review): "A novel ...
If you liked Dominion, try these:
The first novel in The Century Trilogy, Fall of Giants follows the fates of five interrelated families - American, German, Russian, English, and Welsh - as they move through the world-shaking dramas of the First World War, the Russian Revolution, and the struggle for women's suffrage.
In an alternate history, a radical group overthrew Churchill and made peace with Hitler. Now, eight years later at a country retreat, one of the group is murdered; and suspicion falls on the Jewish husband of one of their adult children.
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