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Ice Reich

de William Dietrich

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In 1938, Bush pilot Owen Hart is recruited by Germany's fanatical new government to play a crucial role in a top-secret expedition to Antarctica. But, beneath the ice, a deadly discovery awaits and the fate of the world hangs in balance.
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Exibindo 4 de 4
uf lo termine, malo ( )
  gneoflavio | May 15, 2018 |
I had to sit on this review for a while. It is an oddly structured book and it gave me pause as I was reading. Broken into three parts, each part is its own little adventure that almost seemed like it could have been a 3 book trilogy. Immediately springing to mind is the very basic and loose structure of Star Wars episodes 1-3...We meet and learn the backstory of a main character and the first part ends with a bit of adventure. Part two is all a love story and how the main character is trying to find her. Part three brings the story back and is full on adventure up til the climatic moments followed by some epilogue-ish chapters.

Ice Reich is not as good as Dietrich's Ethan Gage novels. Having said that, this is still a pretty good historical fiction centering around Nazi Germany's ventures into Antarctica looking for a super weapon. As stated in the Author's Note, the only character who is real is Hermann Goering.

So the story is thus: American cold weather pilot went on expedition to Antarctica in the past. It didnt work out, he got fired. In Alaska barely making ends meet he crashes his plane, but just so happens to have been recruited by the Nazis for this new expedition. They go down there, mess around, and end up leaving with not much, a complete disaster. WWII breaks out, love story begins, expedition is up for part two with all the same parties except now they are in a fancy new U Boat (side note after some fact checking...the U4501 was never completed and it was not part of the particular class mentioned in the book XXI, it is a XXVI). But more stuff happens and then it ends. Definitely the third part is the most riveting and it makes it seem like the first part of the book is a very long prologue... ~100 pages of prologue.

Because of this, a 3 star because it was a good and interesting read but just a little too many oddities in structure and plot.

Tracy, do you still read my reviews? ( )
  T4NK | Sep 30, 2014 |
I wanted to like this novel. I wanted a lurid tale of Nazis in the Antarctica, up to no good with a super weapon or maybe establishing the beginnings of that secret base that, according to an old Police Gazette issue, Hitler fled to after the war. When I found out that Dietrich grafted a fictional plot on to the actual 1938 Nazi expedition to the frozen continent, I was fine with that too. I always wondered what they were up to down there.

Bush pilot Owen Hart takes up a Nazi offer to return to Antarctica, site of a former expedition whose failure some blame him for. Ambitious Nazi Jurgen Drexler has talked the Nazi hierarchy into leading an expedition south to stake Third Reich claims in the Antarctic and research the feasibility of whaling there, whale oil being a strategic war material. In December 1938, the expedition departs. Besides the usual support types of sailors and pilots, the expedition includes Drexler, Hart, a sinister Nazi doctor, some SS alpine troops for muscle, and one Greta Heinz, "polar biologist". Heinz's possesses questionable qualifications. She's Drexler's girlfriend, not a noted scientist.

The book starts slow. Things don't start to take off until over a hundred pages into the book with a violent encounter between the Nazis, bent on asserting their territorial claims in southern waters, and a Norwegian whaling vessel. Crippled in the encounter, the ship limps into the bay of an island where the grisly effects of a new plague organism are on display.

The rest of the novel is taken up with Drexler scheming to use the plague as a weapon and Hart scheming to become Heinz's lover.

I did like a couple of things in this book. The structure, where Hart's visits to Atropos Island are separated by most of WWII, was pleasantly unexpected. I also liked the portrayal of Drexler who was not the usual cliched Nazi constantly talking of the Master Race and wiping out Jews. Mostly an amoral careerist whose advancement is tied to the Third Reich's, he looks upon Greta as a trophy. His struggles against Hart are as much for Heinz's loyalty as ideological.

That said, I could have done without the whole romance between Hart and Heinz though it motivates much of the plot. Characters thrown together and falling in love is such an annoying cliche in suspense thrillers that it's basically part of the formula.

I didn't find this novel very suspenseful. Oddly enough, given Dietrich's background as a science journalist and visitor to Antarctica, I also didn't find this novel particularly interesting, scientifically, or evocative of the place. There wasn't enough detail, for me, about the microecosystem of Atropos Island. I also found Heinz's lab aboard ship, with her attendant feats of isolation, testing, and culturing Atropos' plague, somewhat unbelievable. ( )
  RandyStafford | Nov 19, 2011 |
El 1 de diciembre de 1938 el Schwabenland zarpa de Hamburgo con destino a la Antártida. Con el equipo de investigadores viaja un joven nazi que pertenece a la división Allgemeine, la élite del Fuhrer. Es el ano en que se inicia la espiral expansionista alemana y la Antártida se convierte en uno de los objetivos del Tercer Reich. Pero un acontecimiento imprevisto cambia la agenda de prioridades y pone a prueba la integridad de los miembros de la misión. En efecto, tras recalar en una isla a la que dan el nombre de Ctropos, en una bahía formada sobre un cráter volcánico la expedición encuentra los restos de un ballenero noruego, el Bergen, cuya tripulación ha muerto en extrañas circunstancias. Y la investigación del agente mortal no solo pone en peligro la vida de los expedicionarios... Anos después, ante el incierto desenlace de la guerra, la Alemania nazi trata de convertirlo en una poderosa arma biológica.
  kika66 | Jan 2, 2011 |
Exibindo 4 de 4
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In 1938, Bush pilot Owen Hart is recruited by Germany's fanatical new government to play a crucial role in a top-secret expedition to Antarctica. But, beneath the ice, a deadly discovery awaits and the fate of the world hangs in balance.

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