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December 7, 2009

Ghost Ship



Ghost Ship, by Diane Carey

So I got it into my head that I'd like to re-read all the ST:TNG books. I have the vast majority of them sitting on one of my bookshelves and I do occasionally go on "good bits" sprees. Grabbing my favorites and just re-reading favorite scenes. But actually re-reading them cover to cover... I haven't done that in a very long time.

Starting with #1!

This one has a couple parts that I know really really well. Mostly because they are Geordi-centric and he's always been my favorite.

As for the rest of the book, a lot of this one was a bit odd. Most of them didn't really act like themselves. I understand why, it's the first book, the show had hardly been on the air, there really was very little chance of the characterizations being spot on. Geordi and Beverly seemed the best. Picard was off, but only when compared to how he is from season 2 on. He acted a lot more like how he was originally in Encounter at Farpoint. Much harsher and more closed off than he quickly became.

Riker also struck me as being quite a bit off. His inner monologue is entirely too insecure. He's almost nasty to Data which doesn't really match how he behaved in Farpoint. He seemed fascinated by Data, not dismissive of him. Which brings me to Data whose inner life is just odd. He seems to have emotions which it was established from day one he doesn't.

But, there's lots of really great Geordi stuff in this one which makes me happy. Lots of detail about how he sees the world (both literally and figuratively) that does match up with how he is going forward.

December 10, 2009

Peacekeepers



The Peacekeepers, by Gene DeWeese

This one is #2 in the numbered ST:TNG books.

As opposed to Ghost Ship everyone seems much more like themselves in this one.

Geordi and Data end up getting transported far away by an artifact and have to figure out some complicated politics when they arrive. Everyone else has to figure out where they went and go get them.

December 12, 2009

Children of Hamlin



The Children of Hamlin, by Carmen Carter

TNG #3

This one has some interesting questions about kids. There are children that were abducted when they were very young, many years later their people find out about them and want to "rescue" them. They are being well cared for and only know the new people and that environment, which is completely alien to their birth environment. Bringing them back "home" is completely traumatizing because of the severe language and environment changes. So is this a rescue or another abduction?

December 16, 2009

Survivors



Survivors, by Jean Lorrah

TNG #4

This one goes right before Skin of Evil, and is pretty much exclusively about Tasha and Data. There are a lot of flashbacks to her childhood and Starfleet Academy. The two of them have to investigate a planet's government that is asking for Federation help with "rebels". The rebels are led by the guy that rescued Tasha from New Paris, so the question is who are really the good guys?

December 17, 2009

Strike Zone



Strike Zone, by Peter David

TNG #5

I finished this one thinking that the characters were well done and it was emotionally satisfying. Then I looked at the author, Peter David, which would explain it!

The Klingons and the Kreel are fighting over a planet full of very very advanced weapons. Enterprise is sent with diplomats to resolve things. Wesley is trying to find a cure for his friend's deadly illness.

December 21, 2009

Masks



Masks, by John Vornholt

TNG #7

This time we have an ambassador on the Enterprise to try to restore contact with a planet that was sent back to the dark ages a couple hundred years before. The inhabitants were originally theatre folk and ended up keeping and expanding the tradition of masks. They swap, earn, and buy masks based on their social status and jobs, never taking them off.

Picard, Worf, Deanna, and the ambassador go down first but lose contact with the Enterprise. Riker, Data, Pulaski, and two red-shirts end up going to look for them. There are also Ferengi wanting to establish contact with the planet.

May 27, 2011

Titan: Taking Wing



Taking Wing, by Michael A. Martin and Andy Mangels

I wasn't originally planning on reading the Titan books in my ST:TNG re-read. But then while reading the Destiny series and the Typhon Pact series I discovered that there were some characters on Titan that sounded interesting.

This takes place just after the events in ST: Nemesis. Riker finally accepts command of a ship and leaves Enterprise behind. The original plan had been for their mission to be exploration, but they end up being sent to try to help the various Romulan groups deal with each other instead.

There is a lot more diversity in the "aliens", they aren't all just "humans with funny noses". Which is a lot easier to do in a book than a TV show! The dynamics of those kind of differences are always interesting to me.

However, there's a bit of a "soap opera" feel to me. There's a lot more of an emphasis on who's doing what with whom than I've noticed in previous ST books.

April 20, 2011

Lost Souls



Lost Souls, by David Mack

Third in the ST Destiny series.

Everything comes to a head in this one. Including finding out where the Borg actually came from in the first place. I did see the Borg origins coming from a ways off, but it seemed fairly obvious so I think it was probably supposed to be figured out fairly early on. And it was good to finally have an answer to that particular question.

The massive amount of devastation is heart-breaking. Entire planets that have been part of the Trek universe for a long time are gone or severely damaged.

There's generally been a "status quo" kind of philosophy to ST books. Major things don't change. It's really interesting seeing that philosophy change.

April 14, 2011

Mere Mortals



Mere Mortals, by David Mack

The second in the Destiny series.

In this one Enterprise and Aventine have hooked up and are exploring a bunch of subspace tunnels that they think the Borg are using to get around. They want to close the whole network to prevent that.

Titan has ended up stuck on the same planet as Columbia was. They start learning about what happened to that ship and her crew.

April 10, 2011

Gods of Night



Gods of Night, by David Mack

The first in the Destiny series, and I'm back to my ST reading after about two months of other books.

There's been a run up to the Borg being active again in a major way and this series is when they make themselves known. The action jumps around between the Enterprise, Titan, and Aventine, with flashbacks to a very early NX ship the Columbia.

The Borg are attacking in large numbers and they aren't assimilating people any more. They seem to have decided to wipe out the Federation instead. The Enterprise is mostly focused on fighting back and Picard is starting to get a little bit "Ahab"-ish again.

Titan is following what they think might be the Borg's travel method and are investigating that. While Aventine is trying to figure out what they can learn from the wreck of the Columbia. In the flashbacks Columbia has encountered an incredibly powerful, and secretive, race.

All the story-lines do eventually start to show their connections.

I haven't read any of the Titan books so there's a number of new characters there, as well as a couple familiar ones that I'm glad to see again. There are a number of them that seem really interesting so I think I'm going to have to add those books to my list.

June 27, 2011

Encounter at Farpoint



Encounter at Farpoint, by David Gerrold

I thought I had finished all the Next Gen books, but then when I was checking my list of what I've read against my master list of ST books... I discovered a few that I had somehow missed. So here I am back at the beginning.

Novelizations are always a different kind of reading experience. Scenes that were in the script, but didn't make the final cut, are frequently in the book. As well as ones that are added to make it a decent length.

The pacing and structure were a little weird but it's been a while since I've actually watched Farpoint so I'm not sure if that's a product of the episode or something that happened when it was turned into a book. There are a couple places with conflicts that are in progress, but the focus suddenly shifts to something mundane. Which in general I understand, but when the characters involved in the mundane stuff should really be part of resolving the conflict... it just feels off.

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