June 15, 2012

Review - Prologue - Greg Ahlgren

Hello you all!

I bring you today a book called Prologue, which falls perfectly into two of my favorite genres - History and Sci fi.
Greg Ahlgren brings us a world where the Soviet Union has won the Cold War (which wasn't so cold after all) and the United States is now part of it. Actually, half the world is Communist.
Our heroes, Paul DeVere and former Special Operations Officer Lewis Ginter have discovered a way of working with wormholes and going back in time. With that, they develop a plan to go to the past and change the course of history. But the soviets are on to them, Igor Rostov and Natasha Nikitin are watching them to find out what they are doing and how can they stop them.

I absolutely loved the story. Sci fi and history mixed up, both genres get this girl moving and in love.

We also have Amanda, to complicate the story, who is Paul's ex-girlfriend from years ago, who was shipped to the most soviet part of the soviet countries to study and be taught just how to be a good comrade.

The questions asked are important: if we change the future, what happens to us and the ones we love? Why are some people supporting the soviet system if even them are crazy to go to the not-so-soviet parts of the USA? And could that really have happened?

I think Greg has painted a very well done picture, considering several alternatives, several pieces, that put together avoided the advance of communism, but if apart, might have let open the frontiers.

The explanation to how the USA becomes part of the soviet union is perfect and it makes sense - conquer and fear, so instead of a cold war, we get a war war, and a dirty one at it.

Our characters here have fears and ambitions, they want revenge, love, friendship and are suspicious of each other, they are real people. They choose their paths, not always the best one, not always the right one, not always the easy one either, but they choose and work the best they can.

I think one of the most interesting things, aside form the human drama that surprises us around the end of the book and is, because of that, a spoiler, it's how we can see that changing the past isn't so easy. Who would believe you? How can you choose one moment, one definite point of time that can be changed and that will result on whatever you want? Are there such things?

I mean, if you wanted to change the world today, what would you do? When would you go back and what would you do there? And how?!
You can't talk people out of what they wanted, how would you prove you are from the future? Wouldn't they just lock you up? Because if someone came to me today saying they were from the future, I very much doubt they'd stay out of the mental institution...

Either way, I don't want to tell much about the story, because I don't want to spoil it. Parts of it I thought a bit predictable, like what they were going to do to change history, but a major part I could not discover before it was happening and, I must say, the signs were there, but so well placed that I couldn't see - that's a major thing to say.

Recommended to: Sci fi fans, history fans and everyone who likes a good "what if".

Available at Amazon Kindle or Nook, Amazon paperback.