By Eric L. Harry
Jove Books, 567 pp, 2000
This novel deals with the unthinkable:
a Communist invasion of America. Only it's not the Russians, but the
How did China get so strong? Harry
explains early in the book. The Chinese had become heavily involved in
the Vietnam War, and never stopped fighting. Backed by an endless supply
of soldiers, its army conquered Japan, India and the Middle East. It
then took on a united European Union in a massive naval battle. The
Europeans were holding their own until an unknown Chinese fleet arrived
and routed Europe's navy. The army then swept in over land, engulfing
Greece, Italy, and Germany with little trouble. The whole of Europe was
now under Chinese domination.
Somehow, China had managed to create a
missile that knocked out military satellites. So Europe and even America
were blind from the air, and instead had to rely on human intelligence.
That was how China was able to sneak an entire fleet into its battle
China now turned its attention on the
Western Hemisphere, easily routing the Caribbean and South American
nations. Only America was left.
But what was the United States doing
while China conquered the world? Nothing. Its president and majority in
Congress were isolationists, and never lifted a finger to help. Fourteen
American attack submarines were ordered not to attack as that surprise
Chinese fleet passed overhead.
Why am I spending so much time on the
book's premise? Because it is simply too implausible. This never would
have happened. The U.S., isolationist or not, would never allow China or
any other nation to conquer Japan, India, and Middle East, much less
Europe. And Harry never mentions the Russians? What were they doing
while their southern neighbor took over the earth? Just hanging out and
hoping for the best?
This almost ruined the book for me,
but I soldiered on. Luckily, it gets better. A newly elected and former
senator President Baker persuades Congress to declare war on China. His
own daughter signs up as a combat infantryman. A Green Beret wreaks
havoc behind enemy lines. And a mysterious, shadowy group who wants
Baker to use nuclear bombs plots a coup.
Throw in some high-level political
maneuvering and shenanigans between China's military and political
leadership, and you've got a decent novel.
If you can swallow its impossible