The Convoy was my first attempt at a book length novel, started within days after finishing my first draft of The Tower of Psychobable, my expose' of the world of academia. I had just finished one of Harry Turtledove's alternate histories and thought that it seemed easy enough to do. Easier in my mind than straight science fiction or fantasy. I found out soon enough how wrong that assumption was. In Fantasy anything goes as long as the ground rules are established. In Science Fiction, at least good scifi, one only needs to adhere to the basic laws of physics, and make the made up consistent. In alternate history you have to get the technologies right on, and get the characterizations of some real people close enough to be recognizable. Not as easy as it seems. For this book I haunted the libraries of the University of Alabama, looking up the vessels of the war, ballistics tables for naval artillery, and weapons and technology that didn't quite make it to the war. Something humorous happened as I was writing the final scenes of the book. It seems that none of the assets I had spread across the North Atlantic could not possibly get to the final battle, unless I wanted some U-boats and carriers to jack their speed up to a hundred knots. So it was back to the drawing board, replotting with the aid of a map, rewriting scenes, moving passages, until everyone could be there for the final battle.
The story of The Convoy is set in a world in which Germany had won World War I, then became the mightiest nation Earth. World War II is started by the insane grandson of Kaiser Wilhelm. The German Empire, along with their allies Italy, Spain and Turkey, soon find themselves fighting the world. The great depression never occured, and technology is about five years ahead of what it was in true history. The story takes place in the North Atlantic in the Fall of 1944. The forces of the United States, Great Britain and their Commonwealth and Latin American Allies battle the forces of the Axis in Spain, while driving them out of Central Africa and back into the North African deserts. An invasion is planned for Morocco, and the German Navy is desperate to stops the sinews of war flowing from America. The new Type XXI U-boats are deployed, and a number of surface ships use a late season hurricane to break from cover into the convoy lanes. A large convoy is forced to fight for its life to get through to Portugal, while battle groups track and confront the might of the German Navy. The Convoy is offered as is as a free eBook. I have edited out all the glaring errors. However, it is still my first effort of fiction and is a flawed work. There is a lot of action, and I tried to clean up the dialogue. Beyond that, I don't have the time, and am working on other works of alternate fiction to take its place.