source for free and affordable eBooks


Powered by FreeFind

Site search
Web search

    Review of FINAL IMPACT by John Birmingham


    Del Rey, January 2007

    A United Nations task force was sent back through time--into the midst of World War II. Germany, Japan, and the Soviet Union all have benefited from the technology transfer, but U.S. and Britain gain the most, including an entire modern fleet and a significant marine detachment. Now Japan and Germany have shot their wad and both are reeling. Australia and Hawaii are back in allied hands and D-Day is launched early--but the Soviet Union, an early atomic power, terminates its cease-fire with Germany and attacks both Germany and Japan. Stalin and Beria hope to alter the history proclaimed by the sailers from the future and create a larger and eternal Soviet Empire.

    Fans of military SF will enjoy the way modern weapons are deployed against vintage forces, and the innovative hybrids developed by the Germans and Japanese, especially, in their efforts to contain the virtually invincible 21st Century forces. The Japanese 'smart bombs,' for example, are a creative way of merging actual Japanese tactics with modern weaponry.

    FINAL IMPACT is the third volume in THE AXIS OF TIME series by John Birmingham (see more reviews of novels by Birmingham). As such, its focus is on the final destruction of Japan and Germany--and growing tensions between the Soviet Union and the US/Britain alliance. FINAL IMPACT loses sight of what, to me was the most interesting and innovative aspects of this series--the clash of cultures between 20th and 21st century Americans, and concentrates even more heavily on the military aspects of World War II.

    War is ugly and Birmingham doesn't hold back in his descriptions of its ugliness. The Americans, including those from both the 20th and 21st centuries, seem happy to use the defeated Germans and Japanese to execute genocide-by-proxy against their Russian 'allies.' The post-cease-fire destruction of the Japanese suicide carrier seemed unnecessary chest-pounding, serving no purpose except to add to the death toll of a war that turned even more deadly than the historical World War II. Certainly it's hard to find a sympathetic character in this story--Birmingham's 21st Century Warriors may have overcome the racism, sexism, and anti-gay phobias of the 20th century Americans, but they are judgmental and quick to murder--dangerous allies indeed.

    Two Stars

    Reviewed 3/33/05

    Ready to buy it? Click the button:

    Want to learn more?
    Click this link and see more reviews, similar books, and other Amazon information on FINAL IMPACT from

    Rather buy it from Barnes and Noble?
    Click this link for FINAL IMPACT from Barnes and

    Buy eBooks by John Birmingham from

    Too generous? Too stingy. Or did I miss the whole point? Send your comments to I'll publish the best letters I get so let me know if I can use your name. Banner Exchange