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The Journal of the Lincoln Heights Literary Society
Miscellanea and Ephemeron

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06/18/2004 Archived Entry: "Star Trek Book 2 - A Time to Die"

Star Trek - Book 2: A Time to Die
By: John Vornholt
Published by: Pocket Books (a Division of Simon & Schuster, Inc.)

*available as a downloadable eBook!

Reviewed by Kathy LaFollett

I am a fan of Star Trek. I am not an obsessed fan, or Trekkie. I watched reruns when convenient back in the 70s and 80s. Spock was my favorite. My favorite line from Star Trek; ďDamn it Jim! Iím a doctor not a magician!Ē Well, maybe that wasnít a real line, but weíve all used it once in our lives.

My approach to this series was a bit reserved. I donít read fiction. And I normally try to avoid books that are spawned from television. But nevertheless, I am quite smitten with Jean-Luc Picard and The Next Generation was a scheduled diversion at times so I felt somewhat intrigued.

At on the onset of the book, we find our charismatic Captain relieved of his duties and in the Federation Medical Mental Hospital by Court Order. It seems a routine mission of mercy turned into a disastrous event with the total destruction and loss of all hands aboard the USS Juno. Of course politics thickly applied by the Starfleet Command holds Captain Picard accountable due to actions and dangerous due to lack of action, thus his own personal cell, his own personal therapist, and the loss of the Enterprise.

Will Riker is acting Captain of the Enterprise and takes a skeleton crew out to conduct a covert operation to clear Captain Picard of all charges. The covert trip takes the Enterprise right back where it all started, the skeleton graveyard of Rashanar. In the center of the battle for Picardís freedom and good name as well as the center of this floating, whirling graveyard lives a mythical being. It is responsible for the destruction and death of countless fully armed starships. Mayhem, danger, and complete chaos await the crew, but so does a long lost friend and former Enterprise Ensign who will prove invaluable throughout the struggles.

I read fiction now. I have to, so that I can finish this series as soon as possible.

Truly, this is a great read, well told with excellent timeline execution. No matter the chaos, the reader never gets lost. I enjoyed the book thoroughly and found it a nice diversion. I would have to say, that given the choice between reading a bound version of The Next Generation, or watching it as an episode on television I would chose the book every time.

John Vornholt does a tremendous job handling a storyline, back dating stories for edification and clarification, and introducing a few newcomers that must stand up to the test of character lineage that is Star Trek.

I only have one bone to pick with Mr. Vornholt.

Whatís with the character Fristin? He is the Jarjarbinks of this book! He is the Gollum of the Enterprise!
Honestly, his syntax was completely distracting. Considering who he was, and what he knew, this treatment did not work. I understand he had been through a truckload of torture at the hands of the he may have a problem or two. I can accept that theory.
But he IS Jarjarbinks!

Please donít do that again.

Thankfully Fristin is far and few between conversations. And his impact, although annoying like a sugar peaked 4 year old, is not enough to sway my opinion of the book.

I highly recommend book 2 of the Star Trek series, A Time to Die.

Look for upcoming reviews on Book 3 and Book 4

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