This alternate history novella is not about the great differences between our world and the world of the book. Instead the reader is given enough to be getting on with and then the story and characters are the focus of attention.
Our protagonist is no superhero spy, he has a cover and a mission, but events take a turn for the worse quickly. His actions are those of a human being doing what they can, and the choices he makes are hard.
The setting, a harsh colonial frontier and supporting cast are believable. The turn of events humanly stupid and ultimately futile. Despite only having a brief introduction to the changed world, you care about the mission and the effects of the new conflict on the balance of power. Basically, important thing, the story sucks you in and pulls you along at speed, before causing your heart to leap to your mouth as you realise what Johnny Bornewald must face.
If he does not produce a sequel sharpish then I shall be most upset.
Well, who am I to ignore such a demand? During the last few days, I have begun planning a stand-alone sequel that deals with some of the consequences of Johnny’s and Linda’s dramatic adventures in icy Alba. It is just a matter of scheduling my spare time properly.