WorldWar: In The Balance Book Summary and Study Guide

Detailed plot synopsis reviews of WorldWar: In The Balance

A superior alien race attacks Earth at the height of World War II. After an alien invasion during World War II involving nuclear explosions in the sky, Jens Larssen travels from Chicago to a temporary United States capital to convince the U.S. that the atomic research project in Chicago must be defended. Patton is eventually called back to do just that and Jens begins a hard journey back to Chicago to try to find his wife and rejoin the lab.
Click here to see the rest of this review

The aliens came to Earth based on images they took during the Middle Ages. They are surprised at Earth's progress in what they consider a short time. The aliens explode nukes over major cities to create an electro-magnetic pulse to knock out computers. They do not realize that humans use vacuum tube tech which does not react the same to the pulse as more advanced technology would.

The Allies and Axis turn their attentions on the invading aliens. Jewish leaders try to communicate the evil of the Nazis. The Aliens take advantage of this and it is not well received by the rest of the world.

Aliens capture humans and force them to breed because human biology and processes are very different from the aliens' reptilian biology and they want to observe. The aliens ignore water based technologies and navies because they do not have large bodies of water on their planet, so they fail to see the importance. Humans take advantage of this blindspot for a while, but then the aliens change tactics.

The Chicago lab tries to move to Denver to avoid capture. Jens's wife goes too and starts a relationship with one of the soldiers thinking Jens is dead.

Despite dominating much of the world early on in fighting, the aliens start running low on advanced weapons and have to use captured factories to create low-tech, human-level weapons. They are also not prepared for even minor cold. The aliens try to attack oil fields to cripple the humans, but take heavy damage themselves.

Chicago is liberated and Jens discovers the lab has moved and he tries to reach Denver.
Best scene in story: Patton attacking the aliens to liberate Chicago is a chilling scene showing a different World War reaching the heartland of the United States instead of being fought in other lands.

Opinion about the main character: Jens is loyal to his country, to humanity, and to his wife. When these ideals come in conflict, he makes sacrifices and continues to fight.

The review of this Book prepared by Jay Wilburn a Level 2 American Robin scholar

Chapter Analysis of WorldWar: In The Balance

Click on a plot link to find similar books!

Plot & Themes

Composition of Book Descript. of chases or violence 60%planning/preparing, gather info, debate puzzles/motives 20%Feelings, relationships, character bio/development 10%Descript. of society, phenomena (tech), places 10% Tone of book    -   depressing/sad FANTASY or SCIENCE FICTION?    -   alternate history If an invasion, from Earth/human POV:    -   fighting overt invasion (attacking aliens) War or Invasion    -   Yes Is this an adult or child's book?    -   Adult or Young Adult Book Cultural problems, alien culture    -   Yes

Main Character

Identity:    -   Male Profession/status:    -   teacher Age:    -   20's-30's


Earth setting:    -   20th century Takes place on Earth?    -   Yes

Writing Style

Accounts of torture and death?    -   moderately detailed references to deaths scientific jargon? (SF only)    -   a moderate amount of scientific explanation Sex in book?    -   Yes What kind of sex:    -   actual description of sex How much dialogue?    -   roughly even amounts of descript and dialog

Books with storylines, themes & endings like WorldWar: In The Balance

Harry Turtledove Books Note: the views expressed here are only those of the reviewer(s).
2 Ways to Search!

Our Chief Librarian