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Author Topic: Fictional Warships - Novels  (Read 89248 times)

Offline Graham1973

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Re: Fictional Warships - Novels
« Reply #495 on: July 31, 2018, 04:14:33 am »
Last post for July...

Marcus Blake (Pseud.), Atlantis: Revelation, 2013

Germany (WWII)

U-1309
Type VIIC\41 U-Boat
Details as per the real ships
Note: Modified so that it could dive to depths three times greater than standard members of the class (e.g. 2250ft (686m)).

United Kingdom (WWII)

HMS Wildflower
'Cruiser' (Note: More likely to a Flower Class Corvette based on the name.)
Only specific armament mentioned is Mk.VII depth charges fired from K guns (Depth charge mortars).
No other details provided.
Note: At various points in the book the author refers to 'cruisers' as if they were the primary type of vessels the Allies used for ASW operations in WWII, something that can be shown to be wrong with very little research.

United States (2012)

USS Ingram (DDG-???)
Arleigh Burke (Flight IIA) Class Destroyer(?)
Details as per the real ships
Note: Author provides no details other than the ship carries a helicopter, only Flight IIA and after members of the Arleigh Burke Class carried helicopters. Class determined by name only.

USS Dewey (DDG-105)
Arleigh Burke (Flight IIA) Class Destroyer
Real ship, details as in service

USS Seawolf (SSN-21)
Seawolf Class Submarine
Real ship, details as in service.

Fictional weapon

Mk.54 Lightweight Hybrid Torpedo (Note: This term is also used for the Mk.54 (MAKO) Lightweight torpedo on some websites.)
Described as a "...heavily modified..." version of the Mk.54 (MAKO) Lightweight Torpedo
Presumably diameter and other dimensions are unchanged, though this is not explicitly stated.
Impact fuse has been replaced with a digital camera and associated data transmission system
Retains warhead and a proximity fuse.
Speed is given as "...close on a hundred knots..." suggesting that it may make use of supercavitating technology.
Stated to be air droppable.
No other details provided.

Plot summary: For many the lost city of Atlantis is a myth, but for two young adults, one struggling with memory loss, it's existence has become a matter of life and death.

Note: The authors name is described as the pseudonym for "...a bestselling author who lives in the UK with his wife.".  Atlantis first appeared in a work by Plato in a tale whose basic storyline is identical to that of the 1977 film 'Star Wars', in that tale Atlantis was the Evil Empire. By the mid-to-late 19th Century it had morphed into a lost super-civilization from which all others had sprung and since that time has been a magnet for all kinds of fringe ideas. This novel like the self-published on Amazon novel 'The Wolves of Atlantis' (2017) by Telford Lee,  is based on Atlantis lore originating in the 1930s via alleged psychic Edgar Cayce. While clearly the first book in a series of at least three novels, to date (2018), only this novel has been published, though the overall plot-line for the trilogy is fairly easy to figure out.

As to what I think of this story, I've seen dozens of variations of this kind of story following in the wake of Clive Cussler's successes in the 1970s & 80s in reworking fringe material into the basis of action packed adventures. I'm not impressed with this one, aside from the authors belief about WWII cruisers I've mentioned above, in one scene set in the Smithsonian Institution (In Washington DC.) he has a character refer to the fact he had not expected "...every law enforcement officer on the Pacific Coast was going to be here..." which points to carelessness in editing or sloppy research on someone's part since the capitol of the United States is practically located on the Atlantic Coast and as I've said earlier the overall trajectory of the series is fairly easy to figure out.
« Last Edit: July 31, 2018, 05:23:02 am by Graham1973 »

Offline Graham1973

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Re: Fictional Warships - Novels
« Reply #496 on: August 01, 2018, 06:55:25 pm »
Some gung-ho fiction 'self-published on Amazon'...

Roger C. Dunham, Rogue Captain: How Far Would a Father Go to Save His Daughter's Life, 2018

United States

USS Monterey (SSN-749)
Los Angeles Class Submarine
Details as per the real ships.
Modifed by the fitting of silencing tiles of the same type used on the hull of Virginia Class Submarines.
Note: Pennant is in an unallocated bloc of pennant numbers (SSN-744 to SSN-749). The name clashes with that of a Ticonderoga Class Cruiser USS Monterey (CG-61).

USS Stout (DDG-55)
Arleigh Burke Class Destroyer
Real ship, details as in service
Note: Author refers to this ship either as an "...Arleigh Burke class guided missile cruiser..." or as a 'cruiser' throughout the book.

USS Gravely (DDG-107)
Arleigh Burke Class Destroyer
Real ship, details as in service
Note: Author refers to this ship as a 'destroyer' throughout the book.

Plot summary: A US submarine captain and select members of his crew steals his to-be-retired submarine to go after the Abu Sayyaf backed pirates who kidnapped his daughter.

Note: The authors claims that the US Navy tried to stop publication and of his prior service on a nuclear submarine (Identified in the end notes as USS Halibut (SSN-587).) notwithstanding, this is nothing special. This kind of 'US Servicemen steal a warship to go off hunting the countries enemies' plotline is a relatively popular one, see for example the novel 'Warhead' (2011) or even 'North Star Crusade' (1976) on this list for variations on this basic plotline.

Offline Graham1973

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Re: Fictional Warships - Novels
« Reply #497 on: August 04, 2018, 07:12:30 am »
Raymond Harold Sawkins (Pen name: Colin Forbes), By Stealth, 1992

China (People's Republic)

Mao III
Armed Stealth Ship
Weight: 20,000 tons
VLS system containing 12 missiles of an unspecified type mounted forward of the bridge
Laser weapon of unspecified power fitted.
Speed: 30 knots
No other details provided

Yenan
Stealth transport ship.
Speed: 30 knots
Smaller than the Mao III
No other details

Notes: These stealth ships are based, not on the American Sea Shadow (IX-529), but rather on the stealth techniques as applied to the B-2 'Spirit' bomber. The superstructure is low and well rounded, engine exhausts are cooled before reaching the atmosphere and the propellors are designed to be low noise emitting at all speeds. The author describes them as looking variously like, "...a huge submarine travelling on the surface..." (Albiet one without a conning tower.) and "A huge grey shape like that of a half-submerged great whale..." 

United Kingdom

HMS Minotaur
Frigate (FFG), class not specified
Fitted with an experimental anti-Stealth system that makes use of multiple detection modes including LIDAR to defeat passive stealth measures.
No other details provided

Plot summary: A series of mysterious disappearances at sea and other strange events point to a threat to Europe, but from whom.

Note (Spoilers): Colin Forbes was the pen name used by author Raymond Harold Sawkins who started off in the late 1960s with a series of Alistair MacLean style thrillers, one of which 'Avalanche Express' (1977) was filmed in 1979. However by the time this novel came out the author was well into his 'formula' period, which had begun in the mid 1980s. These can easily be identified by the blurbs which take on a very standardized appearance to laying out the plot points. The basic formula was a mutated version of the English Country House mystery, often beginning with a mysterious death (or deaths.) that provides the impetus to the plot with a group of law enforcement (or quasi-law enforcement) agents trying to save Europe from, the United States, Communists (Russian backed or otherwise), Criminal conspiracies or Rogue Companies and which ends with a cast of characters bought together to reveal who did what to whom.

In this case the villains are the Chinese Communists, however the plot is pure Yellow Peril (China) and much more akin to the kinds of stories in this vein written in the 1920s and earlier, with the Chinese planning to overrun Europe with sleeper agents, traitors and a horde of fake refugees. Other novels in this vein I have covered in the thread include  include 'Sunstrike' (1979), 'Sky Masters' (1991), 'Flood Tide' (1997), 'Icefire' (1998), 'China Sea' (2000), 'Two Peasants and a President' (2012), 'White Plague' (2015) and 'Rising Sea' (2018). A novel from his 'Alistair MacLean' period I've covered in this thread is 'Target 5' (1972)
« Last Edit: August 11, 2018, 02:09:16 am by Graham1973 »

Offline Graham1973

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Re: Fictional Warships - Novels
« Reply #498 on: August 04, 2018, 05:45:03 pm »
Raymond Harold Sawkins (Pen name: Colin Forbes), Shockwave, 1990

United States

USS Spruance (DDG-997)
Kidd Class Destroyer
Details as per the real ships.
Note: Name clashes with the lead ship of the Spruance Class Destroyers, USS Spruance (DD-963). The pennant number clashes with the last member of the Spruance Class built, USS Hayler (DD-997). Author explicitly identifies the ship as a member of the Kidd Class.

Russia

Sverdlov
Cruiser (CG), class not specified.
Stated to be one of the Russian navies "...most modern and heavyweight ships." (Kirov Class?)
No other details provided.

Plot summary: As a key component in the Wests new defense system is shipped to the UK, the man in charge of it's security finds himself on the run when he is falsely charged with murder. Fleeing both the law and assassins hired by unknown assailant he and his team find themselves scrambling to find the means to strike back.

Note: This novel  comes from the authors 'formula' period (See my previous post.), but it's a pretty thrilling example of the type and certainly one of the better books he wrote. Other novels by this author in the thread include 'Target 5' (1972) and 'By Stealth' (1992).
« Last Edit: August 04, 2018, 05:56:26 pm by Graham1973 »

Offline Graham1973

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Re: Fictional Warships - Novels
« Reply #499 on: August 10, 2018, 07:55:16 am »
Another 'self-published on Amazon novel'...

D. Clayton Meadows, Of Ice and Steel, 2013

Germany (WWII)

U-761
Type IXC U-Boat
Details as per the real ships.
Commissioned: Not specified but stated to have been "...built... in 1943..."
Lost: August 1944
Note: Pennant clashes with that of a Type VIIC U-Boat comissioned in 1942 and sunk in February 1944.
Torpedos carried include one prototype T11 torpedo (G7es (TXI) "Zaunkönig II"), a real weapon that never entered active service.

Germany ('Present Day')

U-212
Submarine of unspecified class
Stated to be the "...newest German U-Boat...) and described as looking more streamlined than the Vepr (K-157).
No other details provided.

United States

USS Miami (SSN-755)
Los Angeles Class Submarine
Real ship, details as in service.

USS West Virginia (SSBN-736)
Ohio Class Submarine
Real ship, details as in service.

United Kingdom

HMS Swift (P242)
Peacock Class Corvette
Real ship, details as in service.
Note: The author does not explicitly state this but the details he provides fits this class, although he does refer to the ship as a 'destroyer' at one point. The Peacock Class Patrol Ships were built for service in Hong Kong, after the colony was handed back to China in 1996, the ships were sold off to the Phillipines & Ireland. Whenever this novel is set it would appear that the British retained them in service.

Iran

MV Kangan
Armed Merchant Ship (Converted Water Tanker)
Length: 300ft (91.4 m)
Armament: 9 T-72 Tanks have been chained to what the author describes as the lower deck. The main guns can be fired through ports cut into the hull concealed behind false hull plates.
No other details.

Russia

Vepr (K-157)
Akula II (Pr.971U) Class  Submarine
Real ship, details as in service.

Admiral Kuznetsov
Kuznetsov Class Aircraft Carrier
Real ship, details as in service.

Pyotr Velikiy (Peter the Great)
Kirov (Pr.1144) Class  Battlecruiser
Real ship, details as in service

Strogiy
Kashin (Pr.61) Class Destroyer
Real ship, details as in service
Note: In real world decomissioned in 1993, sunk while on tow to be scrapped in 1995.

Simferopol
Udaloy (Pr.1155) Class Destroyer
Details as per the real ships.

Barsuk
Patrol Ship, class not specified
No other details provided.

Grozyyashchiy
Frigate, class not specified.
No other details provided.

Plot summary: The world is on the brink of WWIII as Russia is rocked by a coup backed by the Russian Mafya and a counter-coup backed by the Russian Navy. The tense situation is worsened when someone starts attacking ships in the North Atlantic Ocean, two submarines, one American, the other Russian race to find the cause before the situation spirals completely out of control.

Note (Spoilers): The author provides no specific dating information beyond a news story referring to the "...war on terror..." implying it's set after the events of the 11th of September 2001. Interestingly the story leverages the same science about Tardigrades hibernation abilities Jim Czaijkowski used in 'Ice Hunt' (2003), but attributes it's use to Nazi Germany rather than Soviet Russia. Stories featuring 'Weird Science' attributed to Nazi Germany in this thread include 'Operation Octopus' (1968) and 'Ice Fortress' (2017)
« Last Edit: August 10, 2018, 05:12:11 pm by Graham1973 »

Offline Graham1973

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Re: Fictional Warships - Novels
« Reply #500 on: August 11, 2018, 01:43:37 pm »
Raymond Harold Sawkins (Pen name: Colin Forbes), Avalanche Express, 1977

Russia

Maxim Gorky
'Freighter' (eg Spy Ship)
Weight: 17,000 tons
Equipped with a full range of ELINT equipment
Armament: Dis-mountable Machine guns, types not specified.
Twin Funnels, superstructure aft
Is carrying a full cargo of weapons and ammunition bound for Africa.
No other details provided.

Holland

Unnamed
Torpedo Boat, class not specified.
Armament: 1 x Machine gun, type not specified (fwd), 2 x Torpedoes (Acoustic homing), type not specified, any other armament is not specified
No other details provided.

Plot summary: When the head of the KGB decides to defect to the West, the Soviet Union pulls out the stops to prevent him from reaching safety.

Note (Spoilers): For basic details on the author see the entry for 'By Stealth' (1992). This is a reasonably well written chase thriller that contains in prototype form the basic structure for many of his later 'formula' period novels, namely a, in this case, quasi-official team of agents running across Europe against an opponent of seemingly overwhelming strength. It also contains interesting 'period notions', for example, the novels fictional version of the Red Army Fraction aka the Baader-Meinhof Gang. (The 'Geiger Gang'.) is outright stated to be under the direct control (Via it's leaders, the rank and file know nothing of this.) of the GRU (Soviet Military Intelligence Service).

This was the only one of his novels to be filmed. The resulting 1979 film failed at the box office and no other novels of his were filmed, although there is evidence that the novels preceding this one were optioned at one point (A pity, I would have liked to have seen a film, even a bad one of 'Tramp in Armour' (1969)). There is definite evidence that script of the film deviates from the novel, as a clip of the avalanche sequence from the film available on YouTube shows a completely different sequence of events to that in the novel.

Other novels by the author covered in this thread are 'Target 5' (1972), 'Shockwave' (1990) and 'By Stealth' (1992).
« Last Edit: August 15, 2018, 12:09:25 am by Graham1973 »

Offline Graham1973

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Re: Fictional Warships - Novels
« Reply #501 on: August 14, 2018, 11:33:08 pm »
W.D. Sullivan, Dauntless: A Novel of the Gulf War, 2018

United States

USS Dauntless (DDG-25)
Charles F. Adams Class Destroyer
Details as per the real ships, that received the partial NTU upgrade in the 1980s.
Note: The historic Charles F. Adams class comprised 29 ships, split between the United States, Australia & Germany (Federal Republic) with the hull/pennant  numbers as follows (DDG-2 to 24 (United States, Charles F. Adams Class), DDG-25 to 27 (Australia, Perth Class), DDG-28 to 30 (Germany (Federal Republic), Lütjens Class)). In the novel the split up is as follows (DDG-2 to 25 (United States, Charles F. Adams Class), DDG-26 to 28 (Australia, Perth Class), DDG-29 & 30 (Germany (Federal Republic), Lütjens Class)). The pennant DDG-1 was applied to the USS Gyatt (DD-712/DDG-1) a Gearing Class Destroyer experimentally fitted with Terrier Missiles in the 1950s that was decomissioned in 1969 before being expended as a target in 1970.

The name given to this ship does not follow the naming convention the United States uses for destroyers. See the entry on this thread for 'Empty Nets & Promises' (2016) for an explanation of this.

USS Wade (DD-999)
Spruance Class Destroyer(?)
Details as per the real ships
Note: This ship appears in a characters backstory. The author never states just which class this ship is, class has been determined from the pennant number only.

Iraq

MV Basra (aka MV Najaf & MV Aphrodite)
' Trawler' (eg Spy ship)
Converted fishing vessel
Length: 60ft
Twin diesel engines
'Requisitioned' by Iraqi Intelligence
Outfitted with basic ELINT equipment and military grade communications equipment, this is kept in the hold normally used to store fish after it is caught.
Note: This is essentially an Iraqi registered fishing boat that has been taken into military service. The ELINT equipment is high end radio equipment capable of listening to ship-to-ship communications, the crew have been provided with pages removed from copies of Janes Fighting Ships to allow them to identify US warships.

Plot summary: In the opening days of Bush the Elder's War (Persian Gulf, 1990 - 1991), an ageing destroyer facing decomissioning is given a new captain, one who sees the assigment as punishment for an earlier incident and sent into the firing line.

Note: Most action novels related to the 1990-91 Persian Gulf War, have tended to focus on the land conflict, for the simple reason that Iraq didn't have that much of a navy before the conflict started, leaving little for writers of naval fiction to work with.

The author of this book has to be credited with coming up with a good plotline and a plausible Iraqi threat based on what they were actually capable of doing at the time, rather than indulging in outright fantasy. However his ability to keep the reader guessing is lacking in this novel, I'd figured out more-or-less what was going to happen well before the events actually took place.

Another novel I have covered in this thread which makes use of the conflict as a background (Albiet indirectly.) is 'China Sea' (2000) by David Poyer.
« Last Edit: Yesterday at 08:07:22 am by Graham1973 »

Offline Graham1973

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Re: Fictional Warships - Novels
« Reply #502 on: August 17, 2018, 05:31:34 am »
Robert Ludlum & Gayle Lynds, Robert Ludlum's The Altman Code, 2003

United States

USS James Crowe (FFG-???)
Oliver Hazzard Perry Class Frigate
Details as per the real ships
Note: Class determination has been done by a process of elimination as the author simply refers to the ship as a 'guided missile frigate'. By the time the novel is set, the Oliver Hazzard Perry Class, while nearing the end of it's lifetime was the only class of frigate in US service, the Knox Class having been retired by the mid 1990s.

China (People's Republic)

Zhou Enlai
Submarine (SSN), class not specified.
No other details provided.

Plot summary: The year is 2006 (In an alternate universe.), a freighter has left China carrying a cargo bound for Iraq that the US has circumstantial evidence contains chemical weapon precursors. US agents searching for definitive proof of this find themselves caught up in a byzantine struggle between factions in the Chinese government and a multi-national corporation whose owner regards two million dollars as 'beer money' and who has a contacts list reaching into the highest echelons of various governments.   

Notes: Dating when  the story is set was fairly easy, it runs from Friday, 1st September to Monday, 18th September and 2006 is the first year after the book came out when this occurred. The novel itself is fourth in a series, built around a Presidents-eyes-only covert ops team, where author Robert Ludlum (1927-2001), or at least his papers, provided the plot idea and another author, in this case thriller author Gayle Lynds in her final outing in the series to date, fleshed out into a complete novel.

Offline Graham1973

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Re: Fictional Warships - Novels
« Reply #503 on: Yesterday at 08:17:54 am »
Marc Cameron, Tom Clancy's Power and Empire, 2017

United States

USS Rogue (PC-??)
Cyclone Class Patrol Boat
Details as per the real ships.

RV Meriwether
Oceanographic 'research' ship (eg Spy Ship)
Converted trawler
Length: 89ft (27.1m)
Diesel powered.
Fitted with a towed sonar array.
Fitted out for ELINT.
Note: Cover is that of a fisheries research vessel for the University of Hawaii, actually controlled by the US Defense Intelligence Agency (DIA) 

China (People's Republic)

Kunming (DDG-172)
Type 052D Class Destroyer
Real ship, details as in service.

Republic of China (Taiwan)

Coast Guard

Taitung (CG-133)
1,000-ton Class Cutter
Real ship, details as in service.

Plot summary: A series of terrorist attacks around the world leave trails pointing at the leader of China, but is he really responsible?

Note: Like the previous novel, this is a publishers attempt to keep a well known name alive after the author has died with a series built around a Presidents-eyes-only covert ops team. The major difference is that this series is based around the characters Clancy created in his novels rather than entirely new characters as in the Ludlum series. The writer handles Clancy's characters well and created an effective plotline. However there is no specific dating information provided so the 'Day After Tomorrow' rule applies.
« Last Edit: Yesterday at 04:33:41 pm by Graham1973 »