Joe Steele

Joe Steele

Book - 2015
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"New York Times bestselling author Harry Turtledove's thought-provoking forays into the past have produced such intriguing "what-if" novels as Ruled Britannia, Days of Infamy, and Opening Atlantis. Now "the maven of alternate history" (The San Diego Union-Tribune) envisions the election of a United States President whose political power will redefine what the nation is-and what it means to be American... President Herbert Hoover has failed America. The Great Depression that rose from the ashes of the 1929 stock market crash still casts its dark shadow over the country. Despairing and desperate, the American people hope one of the potential Democratic candidates-New York governor Franklin D. Roosevelt and California congressman Joe Steele-can get the nation on the road to recovery. But fate snatches away one hope when a mansion fire claims the life of Roosevelt, leaving the Democratic party little choice but to nominate Steele, son of a Russian immigrant laborer who identifies more with the common man than with Washington D.C.'s wealthy power brokers. Achieving a landslide victory, President Joe Steele wastes no time pushing through Congress reforms that put citizens back to work. Anyone who gets in his way is getting in the way of America, and that includes the highest in the land. Joe Steele's critics may believe the government is gaining too much control, but they tend to find themselves in work camps if they make too much noise about it. And most people welcome strong leadership, full employment, and an absence of complaining from the newspapers-especially as Hitler and Trotsky begin the kind of posturing that seems sure to drag America into war. "-- Provided by publisher.
Publisher: New York, New York : Roc, [2015]
ISBN: 9780451472182
Branch Call Number: SF TURTLEDOVE
Characteristics: 438 pages ; 24 cm


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Apr 02, 2018

Well written, fairly dark and troubling in light of recent political events south of the border. A good one-off from Turtledove.

May 02, 2017

If you're a fan of alt-history, you're probably familiar with Harry Turtledove and you probably won't need me to tell you that you'll enjoy this book. The synopsis says it all. It's an alternate world where Joseph Stalin's parents immigrated to America and changed their name to 'Steele' before he was born. Steele grows up and rises through the American political sphere. As a result we get to see a pre-WWII and early cold war world with many of the same players, but slight changes. Steele becomes something analogous to the real life Roosevelt and Stalin. He gains power through blackmail, assassinations, and propaganda, while at the same time serves as an advocate for the depression era working and poorer classes. America experiences its first authoritarian dictatorship, rife with forced labor camps for political dissidents, mass executions, and secret police. We get to see an alternate version of WWII with Trotsky leading the USSR, and a cold war conflict in Japan that blends the real life conflicts in Vietnam and Korea. If you like "What If" stories and are a WWII history buff, you'll enjoy this story.

Feb 05, 2017

I am recommending this book as an example of how the executive office of the USA could circumvent and subvert civil protections. An easier read than Upton Sinclair's "It Can't Happen Here".

Apr 28, 2016

This book is a realistic and troubling depiction of how the history of the United States and the world could have unfolded if Joseph Stalin had been born in America and, through the use of media manipulation, blackmail, mass imprisonment and violence, created a totalitarian state in Washington DC to rival those in Berlin and Moscow.


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