This Week’s Book Review - An Angel Called Peterbilt

Looking for a good read? Here is a recommendation. I have an unusual approach to reviewing books. I review books I feel merit a review. Each review is an opportunity to recommend a book. If I do not think a book is worth reading, I find another book to review. You do not have to agree with everything every author has written (I do not), but the fiction I review is entertaining (and often thought-provoking) and the non-fiction contain ideas worth reading.

Book Review

1000 Years Into The Past

Reviewed by Mark Lardas
February 18, 2024

“An Angel Called Peterbilt,” by Eric Flint, Gorg Huff, and Paula Goodlett, Baen Books, February, 2024, 320 pages, $28.00 (Hardcover), $9.99 (E-book)

Michael and Melanie Anderle are truckers, team driving with their twelve-year-old daughter Shane along. At a truck stop they are asked to carry a sensor package measuring time distortions. They accept, to find themselves 1000 years in the past shortly after taking it.

“An Angel Called Peterbilt,” by Eric Flint, Gorg Huff, and Paula Goodlett, begins a new strand in Flint’s Assiti Shards series opened by his novel “1632.” Six Americans from today’s Midwest find themselves in Central Illinois 1000 years or so before their day started.

They are in the era of the Mound Builders. The Anderles find Alyssa Jefferson, her two children, and the corpse of George Dawes with them. (He killed by the time transition. The Anderles and Jeffersons decide to stick together.

For resources they have the Anderle’s Peterbuilt tractor, a trailer filled with diesel and gasoline they were hauling, Dawes’s pickup truck and what is in it, and part of a country store and its contents. No one was in the country store.

It is a standard opening to a new cycle in the Assiti Shards series. Put some folks and what they have with them in the far past with the resources available. It was the West Virginia town of Grantville in the original novel, and a high security prison and a cruise ship in two other cycles.

This novel initially follows that pattern… The six up-timers soon determine where and when they are. (Jefferson, a chemist has some knowledge of astronomy.) They make contact with the locals, tenth-century Indians ally with some. (When you arrive in a massive tractor-trailer the locals think is a demon, the locals want it on their side. Then the two groups start assimilating.

There are the usual bumps. The up-timers’ knowledge threatens the local Powers That Be. Knowledge is power, and TPTB realize the new knowledge could overthrow them. The locals’ religion includes human sacrifice. The up-timers introduce the locals to Christianity to eliminate human sacrifice. This further threatens TPTB. They use sacrifice for control.

This series adds one new twist: communications with uptime. The tracker they carried provides a link with their future. It has been 25 years since Grantville when this story starts. Scientists were studying these transformations. An Apollo-program research effort permits restricted communications under limited conditions.

“An Angel Called Peterbilt” offers a fresh beginning to a long-running series. The authors offer new possibilities, with fascinating ramifications.

Mark Lardas, an engineer, freelance writer, historian, and model-maker, lives in League City. His website is


Psst! The novel “1632” was by Eric Flint, not Drake.

1 Like

Corrected. (Would you believe I did that deliberately to see if anyone was paying attention? Me neither.) Good catch. Thanks.