© 2009 Dayton Ward
Open Secrets almost seems like a break in the action in the Vanguard series. While the science investigation continues, much of the book's focus is on the decaying political situation, the trial of Commodore Reyes, and the slow recovery of Commander T'Pyrnn, who is trapped in her own mind on Vulcan. Because Ward and Mack have built such strong, varied, and sympathetic characters in the last three books, the focus on their trials here -- mostly separated from constant action -- carries the novel well. Ward also works in more TOS references than preceding books: it opens and ends with references to a Star Trek episode. Reyes is one of my favorite characters, so I read with interest. Worth reading for the characters, but this is probably the book most easily to summarize through a recap in following novels. It has one of my favorite pieces of covert art in the series, though.