For many years, the enigmatic Q has been a recurring companion (or should that read nuisance?) to Captain Jean-Luc Picard and the crew of the USS Enterprise. For the better part of two decades we have witnessed his exploits on the Federation’s flagship, as well as in other parts of the universe. But now, the ultimate riddler prepares to deliver the ultimate answer in Keith R. A. DeCandido’s new Star Trek: The Next Generation novel, "Q&A". Right off the top, "Q&A" sets itself apart from the recent batch of Next Generation novels, opening with quite possibly the most unique prologues of any Star Trek work I have ever picked up. To be honest, it felt more like the work of Douglas Adams (The Hitchhiker’s Guide series) than anything else.
Living on the fringes, 17-year-old Jim Kirk has fled from his father’s Iowa farm to that traditional haven for rebels, San Francisco, where he is a dropout hacker who has seen and experienced too much at a young age: As a wide-eyed space enthusiast three years before on Tarsus IV, he was caught in a nightmare of murder and betrayal, caused by the sudden dictator who called himself Kodos (familiar of course to TOS fans from the episode, “The Conscience of the King.”) We meet Jim as he is trying to clear his Academy cadet girlfriend of false charges, and to show up Starfleet at the same time, for reasons that become clearer as the story goes on.
Judith and Garfield Reeves-Stevens first started writing Star Trek books back in 1988 with "Memory Prime" and after that went on to write the two epics "Prime Directive" and "Federation." In 1995 they collaborated with William Shatner on his first Trek novel "The Ashes of Eden" and the trio went on to complete three trilogies – creating the so called "Shatnerverse" of Trek fiction. This month their latest opus, "Star Trek: The Academy–Collision Course" hits books stores. The novel chronicles the lives of young Kirk and Spock as they head to Starfleet Academy. In a new exclusive interview the Reeves-Stevens talk to TrekMovie.com about their Trek writing career and their latest collaboration with the original Captain Kirk.
Last week we linked to fightingthedead.com without explanation. Now we can reveal it is for a 2008 TV series called Alive from the brains of Judith and Garfield Reeves-Stevens and starring John Billingsley and Gary Graham.
Judith and Garfield Reeves-Stevens have been writing science fiction books and TV for decades. They have written a number of Trek novels on their own and in collaboration with William Shatner (including "Star Trek: The Academy–Collision Course" coming out next month). They were also brought in for Star Trek Enterprise’s final (and most consider best) season. But the couple are also aficionados of science fact (see picture of pair on an actual Space Shuttle). They have written a number of non fiction books including one about real missions to Mars. Their most recent television project (the Race to Mars mini-series airing on the Discovery Channel in Canada this Sunday) brings fact and fiction together. Judy and Gar spoke to TrekMovie.com about their Mars project and also about their time on board Enterprise.
Retread is a verb in the English language. It’s second definition, according to dictionary.com is "to repeat or do over, especially without the boldness or inventiveness of the original." A perfect example of what it means to retread is found in J. M. Dillard’s new Star Trek: The Next Generation adventure, "Resistance." Dillard’s novel, a part of the relaunch of the Next Generation franchise, pits Captain Picard up against the Borg once again… and I could swear that I was watching a fan-remix episode pieced together from elements of "The Best of Both Worlds" and "Star Trek: First Contact".
Christopher L. Bennett returns us to the Lost Era with an examination of the life of Captain Jean-Luc Picard between the destruction of the USS Stargazer to his assuming command of the USS Enterprise. Bennett crafts a multifaceted tale that opens with an outstanding look at the Battle of Maxia and its repercussions. When the aftermath gives Picard pause, he takes some time away from Starfleet to pursue his love of archaeology, taking up studies for a doctorate under Dr. Miliani Langford at the University of Alpha Centauri.
Creation TV caught Shatner backstage at the recent Vegas con Bonus Video New Shatner video from Pocket Books on new novel below…
With the eleventh feature film of the Star Trek franchise on track to possibly deliver a tale of the first adventure of Kirk and Spock aboard the starship Enterprise, one might wonder about Spock’s first mission aboard the storied vessel. Veteran Trek script writer D. C. Fontana attempted to do just that back in 1989 with "Vulcan’s Glory" – recently re-released by Pocket Books. At least a decade before the arrival of James T. Kirk on the scene, Captain Christopher Pike commands the starship Enterprise. Having recently returned to Earth for repairs and upgrades, crew transfers are also effected. Enter one Lieutenant Spock, a young Vulcan scientist who seems to have problems relaxing (according to his former commanding officer), and Lieutenant ( J.G.) Montgomery Scott, an engineering whiz and moonshiner of note. Both are new assignees to the Enterprise, and both are in for quite a ride.
D.C. Fontana gives us her thoughts on canon, M’Ress, Ira Steven Behr, and so much more.
At the CBS Products’ presentation at the Las Vegas Creation Star Trek Convention CBS Exec Paula Block stated they are just starting development for "really exciting new products" to tie into the new Star Trek movie. CBS still didn’t know themselves what those products will be, but in the Q&A follow-up it was said that ‘there is sure’ to be some kind of PC game tie. Block told TrekMovie.com that (besides Pocket Books) no licensees have been selected for the new film – so it should not be automatically assumed that current license holders (such as Diamond Select for toys or Bethesda for games) will be doing the products. The new film is the biggest merchandising opportunity for the franchise since the launch of TNG and let’s hope that they get this right. Block tells TrekMovie.com that there is a lot of new interest from companies that haven’t worked with Trek before and so hopefully we truly will see ‘exiting new products.’ One new item that was announced was a new ‘overview’ (tentatively titled ‘Star Trek 101’) from Pocket Books covering everything about Trek including a comprehensive episode guide from every series. The book will be released next fall just in time for the new Star Trek feature…more details below
William Shatner (along with Judith and Garfield Reeves Stevens) has a new book coming out this fall called "Star Trek: The Academy–Collision Course". In a new video Shatner talks about how the book has a disclaimer making sure fans know it is ‘his vision.’.
August 2007 features the re-release of "Death in Winter" a paperback release of a 2005 hardcover TNG novel. This release sets up a series of post-Nemesis TNG novels starting in September (just in time for TNG’s 20th anniversary). "Death in Winter" by Michael Jan FriedmanI’ve been reading books for nearly thirty years and reading Star Trek books for about twenty-two years. In all those years, there have only been a few novels that I couldn’t finish. The only reason I finished Michael Jan Friedman’s "Death in Winter" was to write a review.
Star Trek: Errand of Fury – Book 1: Seeds of Rage (Kevin Ryan)Following up on his successful Errand of Vengeance trilogy, Kevin Ryan returns with "Seeds of Rage", the first book in the three-part Errand of Fury series set before the TOS episode "Errand of Mercy." It’s a difficult time for the crew of the starship Enterprise. With a substantial casualty list in the wake of the events of the preceeding series, Captain Kirk is forced to take on new crew members and consider the futures of some who remain on board. While his security supervisor, Leslie Parrish, struggles with deciding about remaining on duty, Michael Fuller boards the ship, intent on avenging the death of his son. Both situations meet head-on in the midst of the Enterprise’s security department as the crew investigates System 7348 where a primitive Klingon culture is faced with their planet’s impending obliteration at the hand of ‘unknown’ agents.
"The City on the Edge of Forever" is one of Star Trek’s finest hours. Harlan Ellison’s tale of personal sacrifice on behalf of others serves as the touchstone from which the lives of McCoy, Spock, and Kirk flow in David R. George III’s Crucible trilogy. These books, commissioned for the fortieth anniversary celebration, are unique in that they stand outside all other literary continuity. George limits himself to the original episodes, the animated series, and what we know of the original crew from references in later Treks. Also, while the stories can, theoretically, be read in any order, they really should be read in their order of release. The interweaving stories read better in order, and could serve to spoil the enjoyment of the other books. Sadly, reading the books in order may wind up leaving readers with a sub-par feeling at the end.
Didn’t like the finale of Star Trek: Enterprise? You’re not alone. Andy Mangels and Michael A. Martin (and, incidentally, Pocket Books) are counting on that as they present "The Good That Men Do." The book is the first in the ‘relaunch’ of the Enterprise series in novel form. Primarily it is an attempt to undo the damage that 24th century Trek imposed on Enterprise in "These Are The Voyages," while also setting up the arcs for where Pocket plans on taking the series (story here). The book adequately performs these duties, but not without running into its own problems along the way. NOTE: SPOILERS BELOW
The last time we saw Captain Picard he was sitting in space dock fixing up the Enterprise and saying goodbye to old friends after the events of Nemesis. Now that the TNG film era is over, it is up to Trek Novels to continue the story. Riker and Troi have already set off in the popular ‘Titan’ book series, and so Picard must move on without his loyal first officer and trusted counselor. The first of these post Nemesis novels (Death in Winter) was released in hardcover in late 2005, and it focused on Picard/Crusher romance that has been brewing for far too long. That book gets re-issued in paperback later this year along with a slew of new TNG books to help celebrate the TNG 20th anniversary. In the second part of our interview with Simon & Schuster editor Margaret Clark, we find out what is next for The Next Generation.
One of the bigger ‘gaps’ in Trek history is the one between the end of Enterprise and the beginning of The Original Series. Before J.J. Abrams and his band of merry men take a crack, Simon & Schuster are planning their own Enterprise sequels and TOS prequels in this period. Margaret Clark is the editor in charge of the Enterprise series at S&S and tells TrekMovie.com that she wants to make it all make sense. "I have taken a lot of what [Enterprise show runner] Manny Coto started and am taking it forward in such a way that it will make sense to Star Trek fans. So they will go "oh this is how we got to Kirk’s era" says Clark. To that end she has taken on the pos-ENT books like an executive producer and laid out an arc and an end point. The first of these novels (the recently released "The Good That Men Do") starts off by tackling the much maligned "These Are The Voyages" series finale of Enterprise. The good news for fans is that Clark feels she has ‘fixed’ it, saying "For the first time I am being allowed by CBS to contradict an aired episode."
Here are some some bite sized Trek nuggets to hold you over until the next item on TOSR or STXI. To promote TOSR StarTrek.com is running a giveaway for a new poster for Star Trek Remastered. Got to this page to enter to win this 2′ x 3′ poster made for syndicated stations. SciFi.com ran a poll on who should direct Star Trek XI and Joss Whedon came out on top with almost half the votes. Abrams came in 2nd to last with only 14%, click here for full results.
One of the persistent rumors about Star Trek XI is that it centers on the life of Kirk and Spock at the Academy. The Academy story is not a new one, it was originally proposed by Harve Bennett as an idea for Star Trek VI; the studio eventually went with Nick Meyer’s Cold War themed ‘Undiscovered Country’. Last year the Academy notion came back when William Shatner revealed that he is working on a Starfleet Academy book series with his longtime writing partners Judith and Garfield Reeves-Stevens. He also revealed at the time that he had pitched the idea as a series to ‘top executives’ at Paramount. The Trek Movie Report has learned from a studio insider that the Shat went right to the top and pitched it to none other than Viacom Chairman Sumner ‘Get Tom Cruise Off My Property’ Redstone. Supposedly Shatner went in to Paramount after Star Trek Enterprise became ratings challenged in it’s second year. Shatner believed that Paramount/UPN would replace Enterprise with his Academy show, but they stuck with Enterprise for 2 more seasons before pulling the plug. There are currently no known plans for new Trek on TV. But Shatner still plans on getting his story out there in book form,
It is really becoming Shatner Week around here isnt it? William Shatner talked to the Toronto Star about Star Trek XI and his latest novel. When asked to comment about rumors that JJ Abrams is planning on bringing back Kirk and Spock he had this to say: I don’t know about that…I’d heard a rumour that Matt Damon was signed (to play Kirk), but we don’t know if he is signed. I know nothing.” …but if Abrams phones him, Shatner would certainly take the call: Oh yeah…I would love to do it.”