In Rick Campbell's thrilling Empire Rising, Xiang Chenglei, Chinese president and party secretary, has both a problem and a plan. The problem is that China's limited supply of oil is threatening to derail its economic growth and prosperity. Having failed to win access to a greater supply diplomatically, he sets his backup plan in motion. And what is war, but diplomacy by other means?
The U.S. Pacific Fleet is the major military force in the area, and when Taiwan is invaded, the fleet is sent in to repel the invading Chinese forces. The U.S. military expects it to be an easy operation, but after a decades-long, top-secret buildup, China has military capabilities far greater than the United States is aware of. With hidden batteries of long range missiles, advanced cyber warfare capabilities, and a submarine fleet wielding a secret weapon, China is able to overwhelm the American fleet. In fact, China all but wipes out the U.S. Pacific Fleet—leaving them free to turn to their real objective—invasion and expansion across Asia, starting with the four main islands of Japan.
While the Atlantic Fleet surges westward to defend its allies and respond to the destruction of their counterparts, it falls to an unlikely alliance of three people to stop this incursion and prevent an all-but-inevitable global war. National Security Advisor Christine O'Connor has critical information, but she's trapped in Beijing; Captain Murray Wilson, commanding officer of the submarine USS Michigan must somehow infiltrate the Chinese submarine blockade; and Navy SEAL Jake Harrison must lead a strike team into the most hostile of territories with only hours to implement the most daring plan ever.