The Man with the Iron Heart
ISBN: 9780345504357

Turtledove should be a familiar name with readers of alternate history WWII novels.

This one doesn’t disappoint.

In this novel, WWII Nazi Germany has surrendered to the US and Russians. But not all its troops have given up arms. There is a band who call themselves the German Freedom Front — fanatics, suicide bombers and saboteurs — the SS Obergruppenfuhrer Reinhard Heydrich (he was assassinated in real life in 1942). They harass the occupiers through random acts of terrorism, very much like how the russian partisan fought against the German occupiers for a while.

The Russians react with typical (stereotypical?) directness and brutality, while the US forces are portrayed as inefficient and ineffective in dealing with the terrorists. Both sides, adopting conventional and unconventional means, are unable to root out or stop the saboteurs.

On the US political front, president Truman faces mounting political pressure to withdraw the troops. Diana McGraw — mother of a dead soldier — became one such activist and her campaign against Truman’s military policy gains momentum.

I’ll not give any more of the plot away. You’ll have to read if Heydrich’s guerrilla movement succeeds or not.

Interestingly, Turtledove clarifies that there really was a German resistance movement after their surrender. But it never became an effective force, due to lack of leadership among the Nazi and German military.

I think boys and men who have played computer games like Call Of Duty, Medal of Honor (the originals Set in WWII) would probably be interested in reading this as well.

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