DC Alden’s “epic” ends with less than a bang in the last two installments, gathered with the previously reviewed two in the Chronicles omnibus. The politics do take an interesting turn, and that’s that the Evil Continental Caliphate is actually too feminist. It has women in its military in exactly the same places as its opponents (including such non-nurse/clerk roles as AWACS radar operator and explosives technician). And of course the evil collaborator ex-lawyer turned butcher governor (and not a figurehead one either) is a British woman. This all felt deliberate on the author’s part. It wasn’t a redeeming quality or the act of adapting something else. It made “sense” given how more of the vitriol was aimed at the “traitorious British” than the actual invaders, but adds to the creepiness of the books.
The last two entries, Frontline and Deliverance, have all the same issues of their predecessors. The camera is either jumping around various viewpoints or focusing on big arcs involving unsympathetic characters. Having to combine these together leads to plot contrivances clearly designed to make them tied when they shouldn’t have been. Sending a super-secret stealth aircraft to rescue several AWOL squaddies on an ill-conceived raid into Birmingham is the biggest example of this.
The conclusive battle involves a clumsy attempt at Fortress London that’s designed to try to fit a square peg into a round hole. Having to tie the high and low level parts together means it couldn’t just focus on individual danger, and having the previous war be so one-sided means a broad-scope view doesn’t work. There’s more contrived, artificial drama and a very strange series ending that’s at best a sappy dream sequence and at worst implying that the whole thing was just a nightmare (that would explain the military inaccuracies at least…)
So yes, having read this entire series, I can say that it deserves the infamy and scorn it’s gotten. Even accepting its premise as an invasion novel with all the inherent baggage, this could have been executed a lot better. As it stands, it was not.
One thought on “Review: Invasion Chronicles”
Yikes! The individual reviews were frightetning. In the aggregate, it sounds even worse! Thank you for the honest review(s) that your loyal followers have come to expect. Please keep them coming!