[FULL DISCLOSURE: I received my copy of this book free from the author and/or publisher. I was not paid for this review and the opinion expressed is purely my own]
In March of last year I reviewed Power Games: Operation Enduring Unity I by Richard Peters, a fellow veteran. That book was outstanding but left the tale unfinished as first books in trilogies are wont to do. Recently he got in touch with me again and offered me the chance to read and review the last two books in the trilogy and I eagerly jumped at it because of how great book I was.
The two books are Shock and Awe: Operation Enduring Unity II and The Surge: Operation Enduring Unity III. Both take the story of the disintegration of the United States into a second Civil War a little further. Book two tells the tale of the middle of the war while book three tells the conclusion of the war.
Book two begins four months after the events described in the first book and the Two main sides have solidified into two competing governments the secessionist United Republic of America (URA) with a capitol in Sacramento, CA, the USA, and Texas and Oklahoma declaring armed neutrality in the conflict. It is essentially a military stalemate as defection has caused the loyalties of many USA units to be questioned and newness has affected the combat efficiency of the URA forces.
The reader gets the idea that the USA is led by a usurper president who refuses to leave office and is lying when he claims that a new election will see him step down voluntarily while the URA is led by a principled constitutional originalist that just wants to see the constitution respected. Three are hints in this book that that is not the case.
The main story of book two surrounds a USA attack on Denver and then a USA counterattack. The book ends with Texas/Oklahoma neutrality on the fence but an essential stalemate after some murthering great battles on the central plains. The events that lead to this ending are the meat and bones of this book and you will have to read the book for more details.
Book three begins almost immediately after the ending of book two.
The URA is on the ropes and a general amnesty to deserters is seeing the outgunned and outnumbered URA forces starting to trickle away as people refuse to keep fighting for a losing cause. This is where the hints of something more than just a [principled civil war being at work start to come out. The main plot actually comes to the fore. There is a whole backstory that started in the first book that you did not even realize was a backstory until about halfway into the third book. The ending is totally unexpected.
As in the first book the combat scenes have the feel of reality to them that only a combat vet can give. The action is fast-paced and while not non-stop there is enough to satisfy even the most demanding action junkie without being gratuitous. The non-action scenes proved the backstory and backdrop to how the war is fought and most importantly how it ends. The whole story throughout is eminently plausible given the current situation of politics in America. If you did not know better you might almost think you are reading the memoir of someone who fought in the Second America Civil War.
Two excellent books that are well worth reading. I highly recommend them.