S-Day: A Memoir of the Invasion of England

James Stewart Thayer, Author St. Martin's Press $19.95 (465p) ISBN 978-0-312-04148-9
S-Day is the code name for a Nazi invasion of Britain launched in 1942--a fictional 1942, when Hitler, instead of attacking Russia, husbands his resources for the conquest of England. The blow falls on the small American expeditionary force sent to England in the aftermath of Pearl Harbor. Step by step the GIs are driven back until their commander, General Wilson Clay, is faced with a choice that will change the course of history. Thayer ( Ringer ) loses charge of his story, which variously seems an alternate history, a novel on the psychology of command and a military adventure. Instead of learning how the Germans gain air superiority, mount the assault and fight their way inland, readers are given vignettes of men in battle drawn from the common stock of military fiction; Clay himself is merely a collection of mannerisms. Factual errors, such as incorrect order of battle and inaccurate descriptions of weapons and tactics, further diminish the novel's appeal to readers interested in what might have been. (Oct.)
Reviewed on: 10/31/1990
Release date: 11/01/1990
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