Dominion by C. J. SansomDominion by C. J. Sansom


byC. J. Sansom

Paperback | January 7, 2014

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At once a vivid, haunting reimagining of 1950s Britain, a gripping, humane spy thriller and a poignant love story, with Dominion C.J. Sansom once again asserts himself as the master of the historical novel.
     1952. Twelve years have passed since Churchill lost to the appeasers and Britain surrendered to Nazi Germany. The press, radio and television are tightly controlled. British Jews face ever greater constraints.
    But Churchill's Resistance soldiers on. And in a Birmingham mental hospital, fragile scientist Frank Muncaster holds a secret that could alter the balance of the global struggle forever.
    Civil Servant David Fitzgerald, a spy for the Resistance, is given the mission to rescue Frank and get him out of the country. Hard on his heels is Gestapo agent Gunther Hoth, a brilliant, implacable hunter of men, who soon has Frank, along with David's innocent wife, Sarah, directly in his sights.
    C.J. Sansom's literary thriller Winter in Madrid earned him comparisons to Graham Greene, Sebastian Faulks and Ernest Hemingway. Now, in the first alternative history epic from Sansom in the tradition of Robert Harris's Fatherland and Stephen King's 11/22/63, Sansom doesn't just recreate the past--he reinvents it. In a spellbinding tale of suspense, oppression and poignant love, Dominion dares to explore how, in moments of crisis, history can turn on the decisions of a few brave men and women--the secrets they keep and the bonds they share.
C.J. SANSOM was educated at Birmingham University, where he took a BA and then a Ph.D. in history. After working in a variety of jobs, he retrained as a solicitor and practised in Sussex, until becoming a full-time writer. He lives in Sussex.
Title:DominionFormat:PaperbackProduct dimensions:608 pages, 8.9 × 5.9 × 1.2 inShipping dimensions:8.9 × 5.9 × 1.2 inPublished:January 7, 2014Publisher:Random House of CanadaLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0345813634

ISBN - 13:9780345813633

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Rated 3 out of 5 by from interesting read This is the first book like this that I have read, so it was something different for me. Before going into this book I thought it would be more action filled and sort of lead up to another war. It's not, it's a slow burn and not a whole lot happens until the very end, but somehow it still manages to be extremely interesting. I found it incredibly interesting to see what the authors take on the events and situations that could have happened was. Especially because there were a few things that happened that I wasn't expecting. I thought Hitler would play a bigger role throughout the story, not just someone that other characters mention. I found the characters likeable enough, however I found myself not really attached to any of them. I enjoyed reading from all of the characters perspectives, but never felt particularly attached to what happened to them individually. The closest thing I felt to an attachment was to Frank, I think most of that came from the fact that I felt bad for him because of his childhood. I'm not sure if it was the writing style of the characters themselves, but I will say it didn't hinder the reading experience at all. Plot wise, hearing about the spy ring was interesting but there were pretty big chunks where it seemed like nothing was really happening. I also have a love/hate relationship with the ending. I understand why it happened the way that it did and I loved it because there was a lot of action int he last few chapters. However, the very last chapter is the reason I dislike it. It ends the same way as it begins, with Churchill talking to people, but I found I got no closure or information on what had actually happened to the characters. It seemed to me that it ended pretty abruptly. Overall, I would recommend this book if you're a fan of the genre as it did keep me very interested. But go into it knowing that it is a bit of a slow burn and it is not all action and war. If you are someone that absolutely needs to connect and feel attached to the characters to enjoy the story, I would maybe give this one a pass.
Date published: 2017-02-16
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Loved this book! great set of characters It’s been a while since I’ve read a real good alternate history book. This one really got me turning the pages and got me wanting to stay up late to finish it (despite it being about the size of a tome).  So the book is mostly told in three different character narratives. David, Frank, or Sarah. The three characters have issues of their own, (David and Sarah sharing a personal tragedy) each of them having their own way of developing their character throughout the story. Suffice to say, all three of them are stronger than how they started off in the book. Frank, I would have to say, ends up being the strongest one of them all. Of the three I’d have to say it’s a close tie between Sarah and Frank as my favorite. Frank especially, after all that he goes through and with a superb background story. I liked Sarah a lot because although she was going through so many marital issues with David, she got it all together in the end and was able to face the danger and she managed to save face and stand head to head to Natalia (whom I found rather odious and extremely unlikable). Good for Sarah, on top of that instead of breaking down like a poor damsel with her marriage issues she met them straight on and told David exactly how she felt. Sarah darling, I’m holding a torch for you. David would be my least favorite character - but a step above Syme and Natalia (oh goodness, yes I put Syme and Natalia in the same boat here). He was okay until this thing with Natalia come up and he suddenly became a likeable very helpful and loyal character to a lovesick character who can't get anything done. No way sir, but you have much more IMPORTANT things to do but noooooooo you got the one track mind going on here (the scene with saying goodbye on the boat just about had me wanting to push David off of it. Seriously!?! your wife is looking at you and while she’s surviving on her own without any help from you, you’re too busy looking for Natalia arrghhh!!! You don’t deserve Sarah!!!!!!) The plot overall was excellent and well written. It gives a good alternate history of a ‘what if’ scenario and does it well. It nice both sides (German and Resistance) are portrayed here. I sort of felt sorry for Gunther, but on the other hand I didn’t because he was your typical soldier with those silly political views which induces eye rolling throughout certain parts of the book but you can also feel a sort of weariness in him as if he’s really tired of it all.  The author’s note in the back provides good insight and information that deserves a walk through. Overall I was very pleased and happy with the book and am glad I had the opportunity to read and review it. Greatly recommended and I’m definitely going to check out C J Sansom’s other works.
Date published: 2014-03-26

Editorial Reviews

NATIONAL BESTSELLERINTERNATIONAL BESTSELLERLONGLISTED 2014 – International IMPAC Dublin Literary Award“Engaging…. Sansom’s scenario is all too real, and it has sparked a modest controversy among it-couldn’t-happen-here readers across the water…. Sansom has done admirably. A rich and densely plotted story that will make Winston Churchill buffs admire the man even more.”—Kirkus Reviews (starred review) “An absorbing, thoughtful, spy-politico thriller set in the fog-ridden London of 1952…. Part adventure, part espionage, all encompassed by terrific atmosphere and a well-argued ‘it might have been.’”—Marcel Berlins, The Times“A haunting, vividly imagined novel…. The alternative Britain that Sansom constructs, a brilliant amalgam of the 1950s as they actually were and as they might have been, is entirely convincing. Throwaway details cleverly add verisimilitude to his portrait. The tale he sets within his parallel universe is at once exciting, sophisticated and moving.”—Nick Rennison, The Sunday Times"C.J. Sansom has long been one of my favorite writers, but Dominion may be his most richly imagined book yet: it's a wonderful example of what the novel can do--a through-the-looking-glass glimpse into a world that might have been, and almost was." —Kate Atkinson"Tremendous novel that shakes historical preconceptions while also sending shivers down the spine." —The Guardian"Masterly. . . . Sketched with hallucinatory clarity. . . . Sansom, whose Tudor mysteries showed his feeling for the plight of good people in a brutal, treacherous society, builds his nightmare Britain from the sooty bricks of truth. . . . Dominion shows us what a truly broken Britain would look, and feel, like." —The Independent