Harry Turtledove-In at the Death

Harry Potter readers aren’t the only ones to have their excessively long, multibook series finished this month. Tomorrow, Harry Turtledove’s “In the Death”, the last book of his Southern Victory alternative history series (set in a universe where the South won the Civil War) comes out. I therefore call this meeting of the Harry Turtledove appreciation society and book club to order.

Is everyone ready? Any last minute predictions? Is Featherstone going to pull a Hitler and shoot himself in his bunker? Is the last 3/4 of the book going to be the war crimes trial of Jeff Pinkard? Is Sam Carsten going to spend the rest of the war thinking about how he’s fair skinned so he burns easily, or about how he started out as an enlisted man and wound up an officer? Predictions? Hopes? Fears?


My guesses are as follows:

Featherstone is a goner. Potter will take him out in a coup that succeeds and then take control of the CSA.

Same thing with Pinkard - he’ll get killed too. And I bet that Morrell bites it as well.

The CSA will be re-integrated with the USA. At the very least, large chunks of the CSA will be integrated with the USA.

Flora Hamburger sections will be read in double-time as she bores me. :wink:

Sam Carsten will possibly, likely, maybe just once think about his skin tone. And the fact that he’s a mustang.

Morrell might have something unflattering to say about the brass in Philadelphia.

The US gets the bomb… from Germany, who gets it first.

$5 says that there will be discussion on the merits of American vs. Confederate cigarettes. Don’t ask me how I know this, it’s eerie.

I want Canada to win its rebellion against the occupation, dammit. I’ve been waiting for that for gawd knows how long now. They can keep the “Republic” of Quebec, but kick the Yanks out of the rest of the country!

Um. I actually finished it last night. Just like the last one I got it about a week early.

Heh. But I won’t spoil it. Let me know when I can start playing.

I’ve read them all, and god damn, it does get tiresome.

Can anyone tell me if the Doctor and his buddy (can’t remember his name) have had their chapters actually have anything in them besides “Here we are smoking” followed by “Oh, more wounded! Time for a MASH sequence that doesn’t have any humor or depth” and then capped with “We’re done with the surgery, so now we’re going to sit around and bitch about war, cigarettes, and maybe make a comment about how we shouldn’t be smoking so close to the anasthetic”?


Was planning to go pick up my copy this week. Its another series I’ve been following for years now…like with Robert Jordan’s series I remember buying the first book when it first came out. Sometimes I hate these long, drawn out series that take years for the authors to finish (or decades like Jordan’s and King’s).


You shouldn’t have told. That way you could have made amazingly accurate predictions and won the respect of your peers.

I don’t recall their names either, but know who you are talking about. Seems pretty realistic to me, though I guess it could get tedious for some. Soldiers bitch. They bitch and complain about everything…but they usually bitch and complain repeatedly about the SAME things, over and over. And yeah…smokes would be right at the top of the list, just down from officers and the war in general (and maybe a notch or two down from the lack of females and getting laid regularly). I imagine doctors who have to put up with death and pain all the time can’t always be as funny or amusing as those guys on MASH.

Over all I found the series well written and believable. These seem to be the same kinds of bitching (heh) I hear about ANY long series of books in this forum. Its long. Its repetitive. Its boring. The characters do the same things over and over (sort of like, I don’t know…real people?) again throughout series. Makes me wonder why anyone around here WANTS to read a long series.


I’ve wanted this book for more than a year; my mom got me the first two as a birthday present last June.

I’m betting Carsten gets promoted again.

WAG: Pinkard’s wife gets the same revelation that Hip did, tries to kill Pinkard to make it all stop somehow, and sets off something crazy.

Forrest will betray Potter to Featherston in an attempt to get Featherston stunned for a moment, then seize power for himself.

You mean I don’t have it already?

Note, though: Same book store: I did NOT get the Harry Potter book early.

Man, am I ever jealous! How did you swing that?

Damn! Now I’m going to be even further behind. I was in the middle of reading the “paperback”* edition of Drive to the East when it got inadvertently packed while I was moving last September. I still haven’t found the box it was packed in (the move was horribly disorganized and I’m still unearthing things I thought I’d lost). I still haven’t picked up The Grapple, which recently came out in “paperback”* and I’ve given up on trying to avoid spoilers when reading these threads. I like Turtledove, even though I acknowledge that he can be a bit repetitive…although as xtisme points out that this is endemic in any long series.

*I read all of the books in mass market paperback, for both economic and convenience reasons… at the time I did most of my reading on the way to and from work. Which is why it took me so long to get around to reading Drive to the East; I was waiting for the paperback to come out, and then found out that there were no plans to issue it except in hardcover and trade paperback.

Well, we didn’t want to tell you…

Mine is on my way, via Amazon.

My prediction: Variants of the phrase “and it never even occurred to X that (group Y) might feel that way too” will occur at least 3 times.
Oh, and in September we get The Sunrise Lands by S.M. Stirling, whose sample chapters I’ve been greatly enjoying.

Not my point.

These books are a story. When Morrell bitches about the asshats in Philadelphia, it’s during a chapter where there’s something going on - they’re attacking, they’re retreating, they’re planning. The thing is, it’s told from Morrell’s perspective.

But the doctor and his assistant…you could take all the chapters devoted to them, rearrange them, and you wouldn’t notice anything amiss…because the EXACT SAME THING happens in all their bits. The same dialogue.


Well, I got the book, and am almost done with it. It’s not exactly a happy book.

And all the nukes! Have their been 9 cities bombed?

Also, it looks like, for whatever reason, before the book started, the Tsar had moved the Russian capital to Moscow.

Aw, Drive to the East isn’t coming out in mass market paperback? Damn. Well, that explains why I havn’t seen it yet.

It’s out in trade, I think.

I pointed out (Post #13) that Drive to the East is out in trade paperback; I believe it came out shortly before The Grapple was published in hardcover in 2006. Every other book in the series came out in mass market paperback about a year after the hardcover (which was usually also within a month or two of when the next book came out in hardcover. I haven’t heard anything official that there would be no mass market edition of DttE, but considering that it’s been two years now since the hardcover came out, I think that’s a fair assumption.