Reviews and Reflections

by Author | September 11th, 2010

The novel has had another very complementary, yet frank review, this time by a wargamer. You can see the whole review at

I am grateful for the praise given to the novel and thankful for the feedback about areas that could be improved for future novels. The point about the map is something I acknowledged a while back and I am already contracting the services of a cartographer for the next novel. The typos, I fully register. As a self funded project, I took on the proof reading myself. Doing it over Christmas time was never going to be a great idea when it came to thoroughness and I kick myself daily over this schoolboy error. Once again, the proof checking will be dealt with properly this time and go external.

As for the ‘feel’ of the book – well, this is one that will always be up for debate. I wanted to make the book feel original and produce a slight sense of nostalgia for the period without it being a parody of the old black and white war films, and without too many “gor’ blimey governor” dialogoues! To that end, I tried to mix the 1940s feel with the realism and immediacy of modern dialogue and the behaviour of individuals under fire, or under pressure on formation staffs in higher level headquarters. Every individual will have their own preference. On the whole, I think I was fairly happy with the balance, although in the prequel I have managed to balance it a little more in favour of the ‘period’ buffs thanks to laying my hands on some outstanding primary source material recently.

I am also encouraged that the novel has caught the imagination of the wargamer, because that was one of the things that was in the back of my mind throughout as I wrote the story. I make no pretentions to the novel being some kind of deep, thought provoking moral tale. It isn’t. It is, quite simply, a war story that is designed to make those without the experience of battle understand the wide and conflicting range of emotions and experiences that soldiers are subject to. At the end of the day, war is not a computer game, nor is it subject to scientific or mathematical logic (not  in the strict sense anyway). It is a very human and therefore very personal experience. When I spoke with some old comrades recently about a lengthy action we all took part in back in Helmand, we all remembered the event in a slightly different way, albeit with a common thread. This is how I have tried, and will continue to try and write – so that my readers can attempt to get as close as is possible to the world of the fighting man.

Thank you again for your kind and balanced review ‘Ten figures a week’ – all feedback is greatfully received and actively employed in the writing of the prequel to Seelowe Nord. I am hoping that it will be in print early 2011. As they say in the modern army…’watch and shoot’!


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Seelöwe Nord is the online home of Andy Johnson, a war fiction novelist. Seelöwe Nord is a war novel that tells the alternative history of Operation Sealion, the proposed German invasion of Britain in 1940. Followed by Thunder in May, and the recently released Crucible of Fate, the trilogy of War Fiction remains a popular read within the genre.

Andy has also started to publish small Leadership and Management Booklets drawing from his extensive experience across many sectors and industries, both military and civilian, the first of which is entitled Captains of the Gate and is now available for download on eReaders directly from Amazon.