Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Breakthroughs (The Great War, #3)” as Want to Read:
Breakthroughs (The Great War, #3)
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Breakthroughs (Great War #3)

3.91  ·  Rating Details ·  2,336 Ratings  ·  39 Reviews
Is it the war to end all wars--or war without end? What began as a conflict in Europe, when Germany unleashed a lightning assault on its enemies, soon spreads to North America, as a long-simmering hatred between two independent nations explodes in bloody combat. Twice in fifty years the Confederate States of America had humiliated their northern neighbor. Now revenge may a ...more
ebook, 480 pages
Published July 25th 2006 by Del Rey (first published August 1st 2000)
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Breakthroughs, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Breakthroughs

This book is not yet featured on Listopia. Add this book to your favorite list »

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  Rating Details
Andrea Bampi
Not surprisingly, the final book of the series is definitely the worst one.
A typical Turtledovian "last installment" - more than one third of the book spent just to summarize all subplots is frankly ...too much. The storyline begins to (really) advance after about 200 pages, but there's nothing actually surprising, all the interesting ideas were given away in the first books - the conclusion (of course widely open to another follow-up) was 100% predictable since book 2.
Anyway, historical quality
I'm not sure what I can say about 'Breakthroughs' that wasn't also true of the previous two installments in this series. It has a few interesting turns, and not alot of them I can talk about without disclosing the entirety of the books.

In short, this deals with the alternate history in which the South Won the Civil War, and now, in the 1910's, The English, French, Confederates and Russians wage off against the German-Austria-American alliance.

At this junction the war finally 'turns' and the stal
Nicholas Whyte[return][return]The book is the third of a trilogy about an alternate history war ending in 1917, where the US and Germany are fighting a bitter trench combat against Britain/Canada, the Confederate States of America fifty years after their victory in the War of Secession, and France. All the action takes place on or near the North American continent. The major one of the "Breakthroughs" of the title is the penetration of Confederate lines on the Kentucky/T ...more
Finally the long slog is over. It took three months of my life to finish these three books while I was in a WW1 period and by the third book I felt like it was a challenge more than anything, what it must have felt like to fight WW1. Turtledove takes us through the fictional WW1 on American soil in excruciating detail following numerous characters on all fronts and aspects of the war. I wonder over and over if its effective to document a war that never happened in such fine detail and I alternat ...more
Jul 04, 2014 Ross rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a review of the whole "Great War" Trilogy.

Harry Turtledove, often billed as the "Master of alternate history," delivers a comprehensive and engaging version of WWI in which the Civil War was won by the CSA, and the USA sides with Germany.

His in-the-trenches perspective of the major changes in how wars were fought is dramatic and accurate. From the introduction of chemical warfare, airplanes, tanks, and submarines to the rise of communism, the evolution of espionage, and the dramatic chan
Oleksiy Kononov
Jan 22, 2013 Oleksiy Kononov rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A really nice conclusion for the trilogy. I liked the way Turtledove used alternate history within alternate history, when his characters talk about what-have-beens (the War of Secession won by the US, Entente winning WWI etc.). He turned real history, as we know it, into fictional alternate history in the book. Also, the author used real facts from the American Civil War history, WWI history to create his version: CSA losing due to scarce resources, lack of manpower and the red rebellion in the ...more
The other John
Feb 08, 2008 The other John rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This sucks! No, not the book. The book is quite well written and interesting. In it, Mr. Turtledove wraps up the First World War. Well, the first world war of this particular alternate reality. You know, the one where the South had won the Civil War. Now the USA and CSA are fighting across the trenches, just like the European powers. Like the previous volumes of the trilogy, Mr. Turtledove tells the tale from the perspective of a variety of people: soldier and civilian; rich and poor; damnyankee ...more
Gary Letham
Aug 01, 2016 Gary Letham rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Book three of this trilogy, brings us to the end of the Great War in North America. The end looms for the Confederacy and Canada, and it dosent look good. The Norths tactic of massed tank warfare breaks the back of the South and Canada. The stalemate is shattered, even with the South using black troops to fill their numbers, the game is already lost. The storyline of some of the characters ends tragically, others come across a certain peace, but undoubtedly the social upheaval will put paid to t ...more
Holden Attradies
A really good read, just like all the rest. As always Turtledoves way of switching between characters on all sides of the war, from all social and finical classes makes it feel like you have an almost omniscient view of this almost was world.

My only complaint about the book was the last quarter. I'm not sure if it was cause I've read it before, but the end seemed to really drag on. I know all the things that happened in that last quarter needed to happen but so much of it felt like... I don't kn
Andrew Doohan
This is the third (or fourth, depending on how you count them) volume in the alternate history series by Harry Turtledove based on the presumption that the Confederate States of America won the US Civil War and is still in existence at the turn of the 20th century.

This volume is the last of three that look at a World War I type scenario that sees the USA and CSA on opposite sides of that conflict, and I have to say I found the story telling, and the presuppositions that underpin them, both fasci
Feb 23, 2014 Peter rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Jesus but this was a long slog. The final third of a trilogy telling (in ungodly detail) the First World War through the locus of the USA vs the Confederate States. I appreciate the attention to geographical detail, being a map nerd and having been in many of the places here. But make no mistake-- this isn't *good* by any means. Turtledove sticks to his well-worn method of cycling through all his protagonists, some thinner than others (the women in particular). But at least he tied off this tril ...more
Chen-song Qin
The conclusion to the series doesn't exactly break any new territory. It simply finishes the already-obvious direction that the previous book has set in motion. There are a couple of surprising character deaths, but otherwise nothing needs to be said about this book that hasn't already been said about the others in the series.

The end of this war, just like with real history's WWI, leaves an opening for the defeated side to harbour a "stabbed in the back" mentality. This leads to the next series
Jun 22, 2010 Kb rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
As we get further from the original point of departure (1862), I find myself having to suspend disbelief more and more. This isn't necessarily a bad thing as the series remains highly entertaining. I'm now at the point where I can identify patterns and successfully predict certain plot points. In any other kind of fiction, this might be frowned upon, but given the nature of this genre, it's only natural. I'm so glad I've picked up this series.
Mar 12, 2015 Ken rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Alternative histories are fun because it puts the what ifs of history out tcovershere to consider. Turtledove does that with this twist on the time from American Civil War thru WW1. A few of the characters we know, like Custer and Teddy Roosevelt. with a large cast to cover the large spread of history and space that this book covers. The beginning is a bit slow, then it gets going and develops into a very good tale.
Oct 08, 2009 Bryce rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
A satisfying ending to The Great War series, although these three books along with How Few Remain is not an undertaking to be embarked upon lightly. There's a lot of battle and strategy scenes... and they can get tedious unless you really, really like battle and strategy.

Turtledove is always impressive with his knowledge of history and how he can "what if?" the outcome of real events.
Harry Turtledove's alternative version of World War I continues, fought on American soil between the USA and CSA as well as in other parts of the world. I really like the way he follows his characters, sometimes for generations, and the way he examines not only military possibilities but others in politics and other parts of society and life.
Michael Thompson
Jun 08, 2015 Michael Thompson rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The U.S. develops an exciting new weapon: tanks, and uses them to break through the morass that is Northern Virginia led by old foggie George Armstrong Custer. Blacks in the South becoming Communists/rebelling? The Southern government allowing black men to serve in uniform to try and stem the tide? Pretty believable stuff. Well researched.
Paul Berg
Sep 03, 2010 Paul Berg rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Overall, a really good series. You need to read more than 1 book in the series to make it worthwhile, though, because you spend a lot of time figuring out who's who, who's where. I'm on to the American Empire series next - see for a description of this alternative history timeline by Harry Turtledove.
Tim Basuino
More alternative history from Turtledove sees the end of his version of World War I. If you couldn't get enough of the 13-15 main characters from the previous two installments, you won't be disappointed.
Apr 15, 2012 John rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Same problems as before. Each vignette essentially rehashed the same thing about each character each time. The next series (after the end of WWI) seems genuinely interesting, and it's a measure of how bloody cumbersome I found these books that I'm not going to check it out.
Jul 28, 2014 Ed rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I think this was the best book of the First World War trilogy of TL-191. It manages to set up the next book, but also seems like the most realistic. Despite being, in my opinion, better than the previous two books, I think you must read them in order.
Still very entertaining, but I just can't read any more of this alternate history stuff anymore (enough with the series of trilogies already!). The only thing that kept me going this far was enjoying watching the South get repeatedly walloped. No mas.
Denis Kaufman
Harry Turtledove re-imagines WWI fought on the North American continent, between the USA and CSA -- as well as on the seas and in Europe.
Ron Horner
Dec 13, 2008 Ron Horner rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This was an enjoyable conclusion to Turtledove's Great War series, and left me wanting to jump into his American Empire series that deals with the inter-war period.
This series is based on an interesting concept- however, the characters are pretty simplistic and act in largely predictable ways.
May 06, 2015 David rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Harry gives us another will done Alt History Timeline. I'm looking forward to reading the next book in the TIMELINE 191 series.
Apr 16, 2010 Chris rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I just really loved this series and am curious to read more on it. I love the way he tells the story from every side all at once.
Aug 29, 2013 Tyler rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The Great War is over! But the series is not! I have a bad Harry Turtledove bias but again I loved this trilogy, and it sets up the rest of the books nicely. Cant wait.
Dec 03, 2013 Brentman99 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Those who read the Balance series.
Another great book in a fun series. Turtledove excels with great characters, excellent combat and a neat twist on reality. I loved reading it.
Zach Mott
Apr 02, 2008 Zach Mott rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: alternate history fans
Good book that I thought would have concluded the series ... but, there are 7 more books after these initial three. Yeah, that's a lot of pages to read. Good thing I have nothing but time.
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • The Two Georges
  • 1901
  • 1812: The Rivers of War (Trail of Glory, #1)
  • Final Impact (Axis of Time, #3)
  • Roads Not Taken: Tales of Alternate History
  • Stars and Stripes Forever (Stars and Stripes, #1)
  • On the Oceans of Eternity (Nantucket, #3)
  • Alternate Presidents
  • For Want of a Nail: If Burgoyne had won at Saratoga
Dr Harry Norman Turtledove is an American novelist, who has produced a sizeable number of works in several genres including alternate history, historical fiction, fantasy and science fiction.

Harry Turtledove attended UCLA, where he received a Ph.D. in Byzantine history in 1977.

Turtledove has been dubbed "The Master of Alternate History". Within this genre he is known both for creating original sce
More about Harry Turtledove...

Other Books in the Series

Great War (3 books)
  • American Front (The Great War, #1)
  • Walk in Hell (Great War, #2)

Share This Book

No trivia or quizzes yet. Add some now »