Knowing what is coming and having no ability to stop it.
That is the theme of this novel. A plot that kept me on my toes as I read. You're lead through days of dread, then when the battle begins, you read all the devastation. And worse still, it happens in gripping waves.
It's great though. All of it. Very well detailed battle scenes, and world-building; what a world it is. Since the setting is an alternate timeline (after WWI with a different outcome) and after the first alien invasion, the novel integrates changes of what may have been. Stuff like that pops in all throughout. It was fascinating to read. I got this vision of a very post-steampunkish world within some of the settings. Loved that.
I guess people who are interested in this novel really want to know if it's worth being a sequel to H.G. Wells "The War of the Worlds"? My answer would be yes. Not because it's anything like its predecessor (because I think that's a ridiculous expectation), but because it's a very believable storyline that could have easily taken place if H.G. Wells continued. I think it reads better, though in saying that, I should also say it has been many years since I've read Wells.
There were many chapters (part 1 mostly) that were pointless even in a narrative sense. There are also many paragraphs with nothing but overdone descriptions of settings that mean absolutely nothing to the overall story. After a while, it was easy to read through those because I got the sense that this book was about the exploration of the narrator. Those are my only real gripes with the novel. The rest of it was great for me, and a majority of it an enjoyable read.
A U T H O R: Stephen Baxter
P U B L I S H E R: Gollancz
P U B L I S H--D A T E: January 19, 2017
I S B N: 9781524760120
So when the signs of launches on Mars are seen, there seems little reason to worry. Unless you listen to one man, Walter Jenkins, the narrator of Wells' book. He is sure that the Martians have learned, adapted, understood their defeat.
He is right.
Thrust into the chaos of a new invasion, a journalist - sister-in-law to Walter Jenkins - must survive, escape and report on the war.
The Massacre of Mankind has begun