Flint, Eric, editor. Grantville Gazette VI (Ring of Fire). Riverdale, NY: Baen, 2012. eARC. $6.96. http://www.baen.com/ (N)
We now turn to fiction. All of our selections demand some suspension of disbelief. Our later titles take place in a 1630's Germany influenced by Americans (with knowledge and technology) transplanted from the year 2000. Our first title sends us into a dystopian near-future where the Church is underground and Bibles are virtually non-existent.
I understand the confusion some of you face after having read these introductions. We've come a long way since the original novel called 1632. What keeps me hooked are the continuing characters and an expanding universe. What would happen if Americans with year-2000-technology ended up in 1632 Germany? Personally, I'm most interested in the Lutherans I get to read about. I'll never forget how Concordia Triglotta showed up in what most consider science fiction. I keep coming back for the political intrigue, the stories about music and the interaction among Christian groups, and to learn what is happening in the Americas.
It's difficult for me to assess the chronicles as a whole. I want to cheer for an entrepreneur unlike any elsewhere in the 1632 universe. At the same time, I recoil at his pseudo-science and profiteering.