Tuesday, June 24, 2014

No Time Like the Past

No Time Like the Past
© 2014 Greg Cox
400 pages



Question: why is the heroic, resolute-looking face of James T. Kirk carved Rushmore-like into a mountainside in the middle of the Delta Quadrant?  In search of an answer, Seven of Nine is thrown across space and time into the middle of a firefight, whereupon she rescues Kirk and company from Orion pirates and enlists his and the Enterprise's help in returning home  Her quest for home won't be easy, and is made even more difficult by a bureaucrat's big mouth; after the pirates learn there's a woman from the future among them, they badger the Enterprise relentlessly, turning a mystery novel into a running battle. No Time Like the Past is a TOS novel with a Voyager twist, a fantastic adventure novel rendered by veteran author Greg Cox.


In the course of sorting out the mystery, Seven and the TOS crew will revisit the battlegrounds of some of the original series’ odder episodes, including “The Apple”.  Although some premises stretch plausibility (the planet riven by race war between people who are black on the right side, and white on the left, or the reverse),  Cox succeeds in fleshing them out enough for readers to take seriously. Cox has an easier job handling the characters; a veteran Trek author,  his Spock/McCoy salvos are right on the mark.  The Voyager crew are in character as well.  The story is one of a mystery-turned-scavenger hunt punctuated by frequent battle scenes and an explosive finale as the frustrated Orions try to  board and seize the Enterprise itself.  All this makes for a story that moves speedily along, with plenty of action and time spent with beloved and familiar characters.  Their interactions with Seven provide even more to enjoyed.  As they have no idea of her backstory, her cybernetic modifications horrify the doctor, but her rational personality and strength impress Kirk and Spock.  The big TOS three and Seven have a lot of fun together, the many scenes of peril aside, and so too will the reader.








7 comments:

  1. Much as I love Trek (OK, some Trek) I've never read any of the novel tie-ins. I do have one (a freebie off a magazine) but that's in my in the corner gathering dust TBR pile.... [grin]

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  2. A lot of the modern stuff can be daunting because it's built out, but there are hordes of standalone adventures out there if you're ever curious. Do you know the title of yours?

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  3. Not off the top of my head, no. I'd have to dig it out (almost literally) over the weekend. I know its a Picard thing when he was younger.... pre-Enterprise. Does that help?

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  4. That narrows it down considerably -- it's probably one of Michael Jan Friedman's Stargazer books. It's that or Christopher Bennett's book where he's an archeologist after the Stargazer. You'd recognize that one, though, because I reviewed it here. I don't know of any others that would have a young Picard.

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  5. sc said: it's probably one of Michael Jan Friedman's Stargazer books.

    That sounds very familiar....

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  6. I *think* it's 'The Valiant'. The cover certainly looks familiar!

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  7. That's the grandfather of the "Stargazer" books; is it the one where Picard has hair?

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