The Philosopher’s War (The Philosophers Series Book 2)

Written by Tom Miller
Review by Kristen McDermott

Miller continues the exciting alternate World War I adventure begun in The Philosopher’s Flight, picking up where the original volume left off as Robert Weekes, now going by his patronym of Canderelli, leaves Radcliffe and musters out to join the Rescue & Evacuation Corps of philosopher-flyers in the waning days of Germany’s final push to conquer France. The lone male flyer in a hard-as-nails division, Robert struggles to prove himself as good as any woman at the arcane skill of using glyphs drawn in powdered metals to fly without machines, and to transport wounded soldiers to battlefield hospitals.

As in the first volume, there’s lots of fun to be had with the gender-switching of the traditional “band of brothers” plot, as Robert bonds with his platoon and suffers lots of microaggressions from the sisters he comes to know, value, and face death alongside. The plot is fast-paced and propulsive as Robert becomes drawn into a mutinous plot to bring the endless war to a quick close via a mysterious weapon of mass destruction aimed at Berlin. Robert must balance his loyalty to his sister flyers with his love for a glamorous government operative and his desire to prove himself to his Machiavellian commander. He’s an appealing character: principled, resilient, and humorous, and his choices are realistic and sympathetic.

Miller brings his technical expertise as an ER doctor into the graphic descriptions of trench warfare and wounds, and manages a tastefully graphic erotic encounter as well. In other words, there’s something for everyone in this entertaining adventure, and fans get to look forward to another volume to come soon.