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Monday, October 7, 2013

Farthing by Jo Walton

An alternative history where the United Kingdom makes peace with Hitler is the setting of this novel.   A murder that may conveniently enhance a political movement’s goals occurs at Farthing Castle. 

The author spins her history off of ours in the dark days of World War II.   Winston Churchill is driven out of office and peace is negotiated with Hitler.   The U.S. is thoroughly isolationist in this book which helps to drive the UK to peace.  

The story focuses on a young couple, she from the “Farthing Set” and he from a “despised” Jewish background.   The UK is decidedly anti-Semitic and the marriage brings Lucy into conflict with her family. 

This reads very much like what I consider a British mystery.  I’m not sure what that exactly means but to me it is a detailed, very character oriented story with the plot secondary to the characterizations.  This portrays the naivete of politics when making peace with fascism means becoming fascists.

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This book may have been received free of charge from a publisher or a publicist. That will NEVER have a bearing on my recommendations.

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