Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Interview: George Crall

I bring you an interview with George Crall, author of Hitler Invades England.  Enjoy:

Can you tell us a bit about yourself?

I am a native Californian, born in 1923. I Attended Antioch College in Ohio from 1941-1943. Entered the Army in 1943 and served in the 89th Infantry Division, 314th Engineers. Entered West Point in 1945 and graduated in 1949. Was commissioned in the United States Marine Corps and served during the Korean Conflict. Retired from the Marine Corps, and later as President CF Braun & Co, a worldwide engineering and construction company. I am presently an engineering and construction consultant. I have written four books, one of which is a story about my West Point classmates, the others are personal accounts. I live in Newport Beach, California with my wife of 63 years, Muriel.

What are the titles of your 3 other novels?

Night Train From Kiev – very funny, a collection of my writings to friends and classmates. I give it a B+.

Abduction of a General – a semi-fictional account of an abduction of a United States Army General and the efforts of eight retired West Pointers to rescue him. Co-authored with another classmate, Dick Rosenblatt. I give it a C-.

The Consultant – a semi-autobiographical novel about an engineering and construction consultant. My first book, boring.

All of the above are available from Amazon. I believe Night Train is also on Kindle.

What got you interested in alternate history?

I became interested in military history at West Point, and in alternate history as I learned about the blunders that Hitler made, particularly his fantasy that he could arrive at an understanding with England.

Why do you think Hitler had this fascination with England?

Hitler’s fascination with England was his hope that, since they were “Aryans” that he could induce England to accept an accommodation with Germany. He probably felt that defeat of England was not vital to the security of the Reich. Thank God he was wrong.

What is your novel Hitler Invades England about?

Hitler Invades England is a historical novel starting before World War II. It describes England’s failure to prepare for war, Germany’s preparations for war, the invasion of the Low Countries and France, the Battle of Britain, the invasion of England, the successes and final defeat of Hitler’s navy, and how Germany’s invasion of England ultimately succeeded. Invasion actions take place at strategic beaches, ports, cities and airfields throughout England. The book finishes with the final occupation of the entire country. I researched actual historical events and modified them to show how it would have been possible for Germany to invade England, and to eliminate it as a threat to the existence of the Reich. Characters in the book include: Stauffenberg, Hitler, Goering, Speer, Rommel, von Rundstedt, Kesselring, Raeder, Doenitz, Neville Chamberlin, Winston Churchill, and other British and German soldiers, sailors, airmen and civilians. The book contains battles at sea, on land, and in the air over Britain. Battles, captures, escapes, treachery and murder are included in the action.

What inspired you to write the novel?

The recent media and public interest in Hitler.

What sources did you use when researching for the novel?

I used my personal library which includes West Point, United States Naval War College, and United States Marine Corps Staff and Command College material, the public library, and the Internet as sources of information for the novel.

How did you come up with the title?

The title was logical for the nature of the book. I also felt that recent interest in Hitler would draw attention to the book.

Who designed the cover?

I used a stock cover from Amazon Create Space.

Does Amazon have a large selection of book covers to choose from?

Yes, their large selection of covers is available as part of their Create Space program, at no charge.

Consensus among alternate historians is that stories stemming from Operation Sea Lion divergences are inherently implausible. What is your opinion about this?

Most stories stemming from Operation Sea Lion ignore the absolute necessity for Hitler to have devoted more attention and resources to the invasion of England than he is shown to have done in these stories.

If Britain was invaded as you described in your novel, how do you think the eventual war with Soviet Union would play out?

Germany would conquer enough Soviet territory to make her invulnerable. However, it is doubtful that he could have over-run the entire Soviet Union. This would be an interesting book, but I don’t have enough insight or facts to attempt it.

Do you have any other projects you are working on?

Not at present.

What are you reading now?

I read about four books a week. They are mostly military history books, with the occasional book of general interest. I am currently reading The Worst Hard Time by Timothy Egan. It is about the Dust Bowl tragedy in the early 1930's.

Any advice for would be authors?

Read, read, read.

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