He published over a hundred novels and short stories during the pulp years, under a variety of pseudonyms. In the opening of the book, the war has been going on for over twenty years. They're somewhere in France, but the officer in charge of the brigade, a charismatic thirtysomething man only known as "The Lieutenant" has had no word from his command in four years. Because of biological weapons, no British soldier has been allowed to return to England in years. The focus of the novel is on the lieutenant. The lieutenant is relived of his command and his troops turned over to officers who are more in tune with the new government. With his troops restored, he takes control of the GHQ and organizes a mass flotilla of soldiers back to England. Most of the remainder of the book has the lieutenant sailing into England with his army and seizing control of the country. The lieutenant executes the leader of the communist fraction which had been in charge and begins to rebuild England.
The very existence of future historians suggests so, but the story is in no way a happy fable, and the isolationist United States is far from being the land of good guys in this grim tale.
The Lieutenant does succeed in taking back England and in setting it back up as a safe, productive country. I would've liked it to end differently but I can think with why the author did it that way, a bit....
Story and Plot: Considering the fact the author wrote this before World War II suggests an uncanny attempt to ask what would happen if World War I never ended and just ground on for generations. It was an attempt to see what happens to men and women when the horrors of war become a way of life; the only way to live is through strategy rather than being out-gunned. The Lieutenant (we never know his real name) leads a ragtag band of whats left of regiments and battalions. The end of the tale takes place in England.
If I could, I'd give this book 3.5 stars. I'm not a fan of books about war. I get bored just thinking about war books. If I understand the timeline, Hubbard wrote a magazine version of this book in 1939, before he fought in WWII.
When I was very young the first long novel I ever read was Battlefield Earth while more respectable than the film L.Ron Hubbard was not the best Science Fiction writer on the planet. However Final Blackout is a bleak doozy of a short novel that I feel had an anarchist message.
Lafayette Ronald Hubbard was an American author of science fiction and fantasy stories, and the founder of the Church of Scientology. In 1950, Hubbard authored Dianetics: The Modern Science of Mental Health and established a series of organizations to promote Dianetics. Thereafter Hubbard oversaw the growth of the Church of Scientology into a worldwide organization.