The Muddy (muddy) wrote in blotts_attic,
The Muddy

The Company of the Dead - David Kowalski

(Pan MacMillan - 2007 744pg)

The Company of the Dead is David Kowalski's first book and one that has taken him about 7 years to write. We start in 1912 on the Titanic and a mysterious Mr Wells is trying to prevent an accident.

One hundred years later and the replica Titanic is sailing into the harbour of Imperial Japanese occupied New York as part of a deal sponsored by Imperial Germany. The USA has never entered the Great War, the Imperial Empires of Germany and Japan now face off in an uneasy cold war, Hitler is a famous and respected painter and Union and Confederate America sit divided and hostile.

So what we got? I'ld call it Sci Fi - Alternate Earth History? check. Time Travel? check. However the book also dips deeply into spy thriller as Major Kennedy of the Confederate Security Agency ends up on the run from the Union, the Japanese, Germany and his own director as he tries to run the secret Operation Camelot to unite America.

However Kennedy has also found the diary of the time traveler Wells and knows that something isn't completely right with his world and that it all relates back to the Titanic in 1912.

Is it any good? Pretty much. I did find the book started to drag about 4/5ths in as the story became less triple cross back stabbing skullduggery and becomes a large series of set piece battles. While not THAT badly written that do become a bit of an annoyance since deep down all you really want to characters to do is get to the last 1/5 of the book and final start dealing with the time paradoxes.

Overall the book ticks most of the boxes. It is (relatively) fast moving, has good plot twists, has been intelligently researched and manages to neatly tie up all the lose ends.
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