Questions tagged [alternate-history]

Fiction set in a world whose history branches off from our own, which may or may not have science-fictional or fantasy elements

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1 answer
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Book where Patton or MacArthur teams up with Robert E.Lee in an apocalyptic world

A friend told me he read an excellent SF book years ago where Patton or maybe MacArthur partnered somehow with Robert E. Lee in a near-future apocalyptic world. Who knows this?
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20 votes
1 answer
916 views

Looking for a collection of stories about an isolationist community

Sorry, I don't have a lot of information about these stories, other than what I remember of their content. I read them in English, but the character names are definitely not traditional English names,...
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10 votes
1 answer
157 views

Late 19th century - early 20th century alternative New York City named 'Knickerbocker' [duplicate]

I read a fantasy novel in the late 1980s or early '90s, I think, but I'm not sure if it was published at that time. There's a female secondary character (daughter? sister?) who lives on the roof of a ...
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12 votes
1 answer
548 views

Novel involving "Lazarus-pit"-esque resurrections, cloning, and alternate timeline vendettas

I read this in paperback around 2013; it was a pretty new printing at the time. it started with an alternate history '40s-era noir detective in wartime L.A. (or something similar). It flashed back ...
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21 votes
1 answer
1k views

Story ID: An alt-history Roman Empire with religion based on "God Helmet"-style technology?

In the 2010s I read this short story [in English] that I can't seem to find again. My vague impression was that it could have been written as early as the 1980s or '90s, but maybe it was more recent. ...
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  • 213
6 votes
1 answer
154 views

1970s short story: military artificial-intelligence starship with smart-aleck personality from alternate timeline visits Earth [duplicate]

This story was published in the mid-1970s, probably in F&SF, I remember it in a magazine, not in a book. It is told from the perspective of a U.S. military unmanned, artificial-intelligence ...
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  • 63
6 votes
1 answer
136 views

Novel series with ritual cannibalism and flesh essential for life

Reminded by a recent question asking for SciFi books with cannibalism in them. I am looking for a novel series (I think 3-5 books) that I read about 5-6 years ago, and I think it will have been ...
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7 votes
0 answers
133 views

Alternate history novel where an emerging society of "white" people meets an advanced society of "black" people

I've been looking for a years for a novel that I read in the mid-90s. We got it from the local library, but neither my sister nor me have any good clues on the details. It was in German, so it could ...
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  • 171
4 votes
1 answer
231 views

Please identify this novel that features the Game of Life

Name of alternate history novel with a rigid class society that has the Game of Life throughout the book.It was believed that only men were intelligent enough to play the game. This novel takes place ...
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15 votes
1 answer
913 views

Novel about an alternate history where there was no World War II, maybe involving time travel

This novel was published in the early-to-mid 1970s. Paperback. I am pretty sure the author was American and male. If I remember correctly, it was not marketed as 'science fiction' - it may have even ...
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2 votes
0 answers
120 views

How many comic book continuities are there in the Power Rangers universe, or is it one "Shared" continuity for all?

The Mighty Morphin Power Rangers have had a few comic adaptations, those most notably from Boom Studios. The story essentially takes the original premise nd even characters from the 1993 show, and ...
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10 votes
1 answer
262 views

Early 1980's book - USSR invades the UK

As shown in the title, I read this in the very early 1980s. I think it was a Brit author. I thought of it yesterday after the BBC controversy about 'Last Night of the Proms'. Somewhat like SS-GB in ...
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7 votes
0 answers
127 views

Einstein "quantum leaps" into young Japanese girl

I recall a short story I read in the 80's or 90's (might be older than that). The premise is that Albert Einstein (pretty sure it was him, might've been another scientist associated with the ...
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8 votes
1 answer
165 views

Searching for an SF short story

Looking for a short science fiction story which opens with a seemingly normal family-on-vacation scenario, but where any citizen has a rare random chance of being instantly painlessly killed as they ...
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22 votes
2 answers
2k views

What was this book about books that never existed?

I'm looking for a book that's a collection of encyclopedia-style entries about books that were lost/forgotten/alternate versions/never actually written. These weren't REAL lost books, they were ...
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27 votes
0 answers
405 views

A story about a doctor who travels to a parallel universe to seek a cure for bubonic plague

Recent news has been reminding me of various things I've read about the Black Death, including a story I believe I only saw once, and never stumbled across again. I encountered it over 30 years ago, ...
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1 vote
2 answers
141 views

Alternative history story from late 70's-early 80s relating to British victory in the American Revolution

Does anyone know the title and author of an alternative history from the late 70s-80s with a plot based on a scenario of British victory in the Revolutionary War? I recall a scene which took place in ...
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9 votes
1 answer
1k views

Plains natives happen across a late 1890s airbase

Long ago I read an anthology whose introduction to one story seemed to claim it was the first of its sort. Reading over the Wiki article on alternative history, this appears to be very much not the ...
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5 votes
1 answer
10k views

Is Margo Madison in "For All Mankind" based on Margaret Hamilton?

I recently watched the first episode of For All Mankind. A friend of mine who recommended it said that one of the leading characters among the historical ones is Margaret Hamilton, the leading NASA ...
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15 votes
1 answer
5k views

Has any version of Marvel's Black Panther ever been able to actually turn into a Were-Panther form?

I know I saw this somewhere, possibly in another reality outside of 616. In that version, T'Challa (the Black Panther) seemed to "shift" into a humanoid panther form, very similar to Wolfbane's "mid ...
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8 votes
1 answer
3k views

Did Mighty Morphin Power Rangers: The Movie take place in an alternate timeline?

The 1995 film Mighty Morphin Power Rangers: The Movie plays out like an extended special episode, giving the Rangers new "Ninjetti" powers and Zords based not around the Dinosaurs, but modern day ...
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  • 11.7k
4 votes
0 answers
359 views

Alt-reality film. Being hetero is taboo. People forced to be gay

This was a really bizarre film. I'm not sure if it was a movie, a mockumentary, or a "what if" alternate reality think piece. The premise was that straight people are shunned from society, while being ...
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6 votes
1 answer
228 views

What year is the series "Chilling Adventures of Sabrina" supposedly set in?

Almost everything in Greendale seems to be vintage 1960's (cars, movies, dress). I assume it is to reflect the original comic book, but I swear I saw Ambrose using a laptop computer in the first ...
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6 votes
1 answer
263 views

What alternate history has Americans salting their tea?

I keep thinking this may be The Two Georges, but I can’t find my copy anywhere. I’m fairly sure this was from an alternate history where the US was still part of the British empire. I think this ...
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18 votes
1 answer
3k views

Looking for a story about how the USA acquired an inland sea

I came across a story ID request here recently, that reminded me of another similar story I've read. So that earthquake, did you check your math? The story I've read, most likely in '90s or the late ...
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4 votes
2 answers
957 views

Novel about an alternate history of the Aztec empire from a modern day archaeologist time travelling back there

This is a posthumous novel(?) from the 70 or 80s(?) where a modern day archaeologist who is transported back to the Aztec empire on the brink of the conquest, but then changes the course of history à ...
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22 votes
1 answer
407 views

Short story where a physics professor goes to a timeline where his son doesn’t exist

The story probably dates from the late 80s to early 90s. I'm almost sure I read it in one of the pulp magazines while researching an article in the early '00s. A physics professor, in a fit of ...
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  • 508
9 votes
1 answer
245 views

Novel about Soviets winning the Cold War

I don’t remember the plot beyond a few salient points: It was an alternate history in which the Soviets won the Cold War. There was a description towards the beginning of new apartment buildings ...
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13 votes
1 answer
2k views

Book about government-funded research yielding functional teleportation that causes personality changes

I read about 15 years ago a book about teleportation devices and alternate histories, and I have the greatest difficulties to recall its name or its author. The story goes more or less like this: ...
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5 votes
1 answer
254 views

Why is steam power acceptable to the ruling Catholic Church in Pavane, but not electricity?

In Keith Roberts’ alternate history fix-up novel Pavane, 1968 Britain is still labouring under a steam-powered industrial revolution. People travel by horse, steam trains transport freight and ...
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6 votes
0 answers
226 views

Short story with travel between alternative realities through the London Underground

I think it's a story from the 60s or 70s, set in its present. A British SS from an alternative reality in which Nazi Germany has won the war arrives inadvertently to our reality's London. I remember ...
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  • 7,714
5 votes
1 answer
109 views

Help! Book with Double Headed Character Called Neds

This is my first time posting here so please point out any etiquette mistakes I make :) I am looking for help finding a trilogy I read some time ago. I can't seem to remember enough search terms to ...
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7 votes
1 answer
629 views

Did the 9/11 (World Trade Centre) attack happen in the Star Trek universe?

There is evidence that the timeline of Star Trek had already diverged from our own by the middle of the 20th century. Are there any materials, at any level of canon, that describe the fate of the Twin ...
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6 votes
1 answer
241 views

Story identification: Time travel to disrupt Columbus

I'm trying to recall the name of a novel that was set in a dystopian future with time travel. A group sets out to disrupt Columbus and change Aztec culture to be more resistant to European invasion ...
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6 votes
2 answers
2k views

What are the human cultures depicted in the Valerian opening montage?

Relating to this video: and this question: Why this year in Valerian?, @Valorum provided this answer which explains the context and thinking In particular, In short, ...
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3 votes
1 answer
390 views

Why this year in Valerian?

Valerian and the City of a Thousand Planets starts with this awesome montage showing humanity's progress through a series of peaceful handshakes as vessels and space ...
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6 votes
0 answers
167 views

Short story involving preventing disaster by keeping one key man from doing/not doing something

Read this story 20-30 years ago but it was probably old then. A team of operatives (from the future?) tries to influence the actions of one key man to prevent devastation of earth. In one world this ...
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4 votes
1 answer
253 views

Alternate history/fantasy novel with a woman as Alexander the Great

Can anyone identify a novel, probably from the '80s, which told the story of Alexander the Great but gender flipped to be a woman? The character's name was altered to be Aleksanr Alisond (or similar). ...
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7 votes
1 answer
764 views

Short story where time travelers are surprised to see black people

In one of Gardner Dozois anthologies in the last few years had a short story about an alternate time line where the travelers were surprised to see black people as their reality had none. Can anyone ...
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7 votes
1 answer
218 views

Alternative History - Alchemy, crystal faxes, and Jesus Shoes

I recall reading a book that was newly or recently released in the mid-to-late 90s which featured an alternative history where alchemy, not science, was discovered. Many of the prominent characters ...
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  • 104k
7 votes
1 answer
296 views

Short story about an alternate World War One lasting 20 years

This was a story I read a long time ago, I believe from Asimov's magazine in the early 1980s (1982?), about a pilot or soldier in an alternate World War I that lasted much longer than it did in our ...
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4 votes
1 answer
153 views

WWII Naval short story

I am trying to locate a short story about a new radar being tested by the US Navy during WWII. The captain of the test vessel encounters a Japanese fleet heading to the west coast and using the new ...
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  • 41
5 votes
1 answer
268 views

A human has psychic power that makes people forget that he is there. Including his parents

...Spoiler alert... Alternate history where humans have developed psychic powers. A baby is born whose power is that people "forget" about him. Robot nurses feed and change him etc. His parents ...
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  • 101
3 votes
0 answers
82 views

Musician (Guitarist?) finds "muse" at party, but muse is "drained" of energy by musician

... Spoiler alert ... A male musician, possibly a guitarist, in his 20's meets a girl at a party and she is his "muse". However, in this world muses are "drained" of energy by the musician. His ...
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  • 101
5 votes
1 answer
411 views

Need help identifying - Alternate history - Spanish Armada wins over English

Can somebody help me identify this story which I read in the 1980s(?). What I remember is that in 1588 the Spanish Armada was not destroyed on its way to battle the English fleet and the English ...
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5 votes
0 answers
282 views

Short fiction where America is at war with Canada

I'm looking for an short-fiction alternate-history book collection where different groups are at war with each other for different reasons. It was probably made during the 1980s or 1990s. In one of ...
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7 votes
1 answer
1k views

What does Mr. Tagomi's assistant say when he opens the door?

In Amazon's The Man in the High Castle, whenever Kotomichi comes into Mr. Tagomi's office, he says something just before he opens the door. It sounds sort of like "Christmas" to me, but presumably it'...
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  • 2,577
6 votes
1 answer
115 views

Title/author of fantasy novel -- the Puritans visit Ottoman Empire ? Alt. Hist

I'm looking for a female fantasy author who wrote a novel about an alternate reality in which the Puritans always ruled America, and visited the Ottoman Empire, seeking a trade deal. It's a commentary ...
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  • 63
5 votes
1 answer
336 views

How did the Nazis come to invade Britain?

In the BBC drama SS-GB the Nazis have invaded the UK and instigated their rule across the country. The timeline of the first episode appears to happen in 1941. What event was different from our ...
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  • 1,568
6 votes
1 answer
431 views

All the Small Wars at Once

Looking for a SF Short Story I read many years ago. Name (although not exactly sure): "All the Small Wars at Once". I believe it was written by Larry Niven (but not sure). Brief synopsis (as I ...
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