Fox on the Rhine
There have been a number of third Reich alternate histories
published recently and Fox on the Rhine attempts to follow that tradition.
Following a plot to kill Hitler (which failed in OTL), the authorsí
hypothesise Himmler taking control by out-manovering the army generals behind
the plot. Himmler immediately attempts to save the Reich by making a
truce with the soviets and placing Rommel in command of the western front.
The book, which is very detailed, rockets along towards a surprising
conclusion. (which, incidentally, is the conclusion John reaches in If the July 20 Plot Had Succeeded)
The book has a massive wealth of technical and character
details. Itís sometimes hard to
tell which characters are real and which are made up. Rommel, the most detailed character, comes across as a
super-smart commander of the German troops.
Patton is also praised, while Monty is degraded and Stalin is a
manipulating toad. Some bias there?
I do have some doubts about the truce with the soviets.
Even with Himmler in the driving seat, many elements of the German
military would be unhappy about a truce with Ďuntermesumí, while even Stalin
might not be able to pull off a truce with the foe that heís spent ages
building hatred for in the hearts of the soviet people.
Popular unrest is probably a null-factor in soviet politics, but it might
have other consequences; Polish groups might abandon communism, partisans might
continue the war without Stalinís permission, military leaders might consider
a coup díetat, etc. Stalin might
also try to hit the Japanese while the truce is on, while occupying Norway and
Greece is likely to provoke a reaction from the allies, such as a blockade and
(Much to my relief, there is a short section with the
soviets twisting the screws on Germany, although no attack on Japan.)
Few other minor quibbles:
why have Rommel do what he does at the end, instead of marching to
Berlin? Would the jets have really
been that effective? (The allies of
OTL managed to counter the jets fairly quickly.)