Tuesday, February 8, 2022

Book Review: Cyber Shogun Revolution, by Peter Tieryas

The third book, set in author Peter Tieryas’ United States of Japan universe, Cyber Shogun Revolution continues down of the path established by the first two books in the loosely connected series (United States of Japan, Mecha Samurai Empire) of careful worldbuilding, character development, and plotting.

It’s no secret that I’m a fan of the author. This book moves the series forward from its initial premise that Japan and its Axis partner Germany invaded and occupied the United States and Canada in 1946. In Cyber Shogun Revolution, it is an alternate 2019 and the two erstwhile allies have settled into a not-so-cold piece. One of the two protagonists, ace giant Mecha pilot, Reiko Morikawa participates in the overthrow of the corrupt United States of Japan governor and Nazi sympathizer, with the initials Daigo Tamura (it seems the author is having a little satiric fun here.)
Rieko soon teams up with Bishop Wakana, an honest cop working for the secret police, Tokko. The trail leads then through of maze of conspiracies within conspiracies and wheels within wheels. 

The only link is the legendary assassin, Bloody Mary, who has left a trail of dead Nazis in her wake.

It’s not a cliché to say here that nothing is what it seems to be here, and that is a measure of Tieryas’ plotting and storytelling skills. Once again, his characters protagonist and antagonist inhabit a fully fleshed-out world. I also like how everything is not black and white. The chief group of antagonists, for example, truly believe they are doing good.

This is an excellent work of speculative fiction and alternate history. There have been other the-Axis-win-the-war books and series – it’s a whole subgenre, in fact, but this takes it to new levels.

Highly Recommended.

What’s Next?
I’m a little -a lot – late in getting this review out. Despite being triple-vaxxed and wearing my mask, I got hit with the coronavirus last January. It wasn’t a lot of fun and almost a month later, I still have a hacking cough. I consider myself fortunate that I was boosted before I got hit with it; if not, it could’ve been much worse. If you’re one of the 10% who is unvaccinated, perhaps this is something you might want to reconsider.

A thought.

I suppose also I’m a little burned out. When you write for a living and then try to write a monthly review column (as well as read the books), it’s a lot. I also want to start writing fiction again, including a possible sequel to War Plan Crimson, but there just hasn’t been time.

I’ll keep the doing this blog – just not as frequently. I’ll be back soon. Be good to yourselves and each other.

In the meantime, you can purchase Elvis Saves JFK! for just 99 cents and War Plan Crimson, A Novel of Alternate History, for $2.99 (both free to preview). All books -- which are already on Smashword's premium distribution list -- are also available through such fine on-line retailers such as Sony, Chapters Indigo, Barnes & Noble and Apple's iTunes Store.