This is the 3rd book in an Alternative History (a book in which the consequences of a change in our history are explored) describing what might have happened if the British Royal Navy had got back control of its air power from the RAF in 1932.
The air arms of the navy and army had been combined into the RAF during World War 1, and as a consequence naval aviation was badly neglected by the Air Ministry. Though not by the Royal Navy. Contrary to much popular belief, the Royal Navy was very air-minded between the wars, but was severely limited by what the Air Ministry was prepared to do for them.
There had been a number of attempts to recover naval air, indeed a debate on this issue in Parliament in 1926 only failed by two votes. This story starts in 1932, when an aggrieved Navy decides to make it a serious issue, and gets back control. After this, the development before the war is based on projected plans and ships the RN considered, but never got to implement (mainly because the aircraft were not forthcoming from the Air Ministry).
The first 2 books show the pre-war development, and the first years of the Second World War. While many changes are small, the biggest one is that the British have managed to clear Italy from North Africa. Also, the small changes are steadily growing in effect. At the end of Book 2, the Japanese enter the war with an attack on the US fleet at Pearl Harbor.
This book describes what happens next. The British have more resources available for the Far East this time. Although the war plan (basically the same as that designed in 'real' history) isn't complete, it is further along and more competent men are in command. The Japanese attacks were always made with minimal resources. This time, the opposition is tougher. The battles to hold back the invaders are on land and sea, as the British struggle to hold Malaya and the surrounding seas as well as help the Dutch, while the US tries to hold the Philippines and hold back the Japanese fleet.
Author: David Row
Title: The Whale Has Wings: Holding the Barrier
Series: The Whale Has Wings
First Published by: David Row
Date: 13 December 2013