*Starred Review* Followers of Turtledove’s Atlantis trilogy (Opening Atlantis, 2007; The United States of Atlantis, 2008; and this book) won’t be surprised that it concludes with an Atlantean Civil War. Nor will those familiar with Turtledove’s oeuvre be surprised that his expertise on the American Civil War makes the third book the trilogy’s best. To get a this-world fix on its animating conceit, imagine that Nat Turner was George Washington’s mulatto grandson, who, threatened with death, determined to be free and raised a formidable slave army. Such is what Frederic Ratcliff does in Atlantis, where the Slave Power isn’t as formidable as the American South was and racism isn’t as strong. Ratcliff and his Native American general, Lorenzo, face a respectable professional army led by hard-bitten Balthasar Sinapis, a European exile with a mysterious past. At the nominal head of that army on alternating days are pro-slavery consul Jeremiah Stafford and his anti-slavery partner, Leland Newton. Political bickering, effective guerrilla tactics, and unfamiliar terrain lead to a situation in which the army must negotiate peace or be slaughtered. Then the light dawns on both parties that fighting to decisive victory or defeat will ruin Atlantis for everyone. The Treaty of Slug Hollow is hammered out and presented to the Senate. More obstacles remain, and the Senate offers a mixture of horror-struck opposition, hair-tearing doubt, and sighs of relief. In the end, readers may, overwhelmingly, join in joyously launching their hats skyward. --Roland Green
About the Author
Harry Turtledove—the New York Times bestselling author of numerous alternate history novels, including The Guns of the South, How Few Remain, and the Worldwar quartet—has a Ph.D. in Byzantine history. Nominated numerous times for the Nebula Award, he has won the Hugo, Sidewise, and John Esthen Cook Awards. He lives with his wife and children in California.