Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Star Trek: From History's Shadow

From History's Shadow. Dayton Ward. Based on the concept created by Gene Roddenberry. (Star Trek: The Original Series).  2013. Pocket Books. Pages: 427. [Source: Bought]

He heard breathing and the rustling of clothing. Muscles tensing in anticipation of a confrontation if not a full-blown firefight, Kirk stepped around the stacked containers and levelled his phaser at the figure standing in the open. It was the Vulcan, who appeared flush and disheveled. At his feet lay what could only be the particle weapon detected by Spock's tricorder.

"That is my only weapon," he said, standing in place and holding his hands away from his body. "I am not a threat. It is my counterpart who should concern you."

~~~

I've had this pocket book sitting in the data-banks of my iPad for 6 months to a year. I can't quite remember when I bought it, I just remember that I wanted to read it very badly since it sounded like it was quite exciting. And I wasn't disappointed. Did I love From History's Shadow? Yes, yes I did.

From History's Shadow starts out with the crew of the Enterprise just having returned to the 23rd Century after the whole incident with Gary Seven in the Original Series episode "Assignment: Earth". They've barely been in their century a day before a disturbance in a cargo bay has them slamming on the brakes so they can go investigate.

What exactly is causing all that fuss in the cargo bay, anyway? Turns out, Enterprise somehow gained a couple of stow-aways when it was in the 20th Century.

One of the reasons why I grabbed this book was because Mestral was in it. Mestral is a Vulcan character from the only Star Trek: Enterprise episode I've ever watched - "Carbon Creek". The reason why I like him so much is because he decided to stay on Earth after kind of falling in love with a Carbon Creek resident named Maggie. The thought that Mestral, a Vulcan, decided to stay and live amongst the human race, which at the time was extremely interested in the concept of alien invaders, is an interesting concept.

I liked the action and the cohesiveness of the plot of this story. Despite the fact that there were at least four points of view at any given time, I understood what was happening at each point and the only times I felt lost were when I returned to the story after stopping in the middle of a scene. Each and every character read like they were supposed to. Sometimes I felt that the situations weren't described as much as they could have but in every scene my imagination took over and compensated because there was enough information!

At the end of the novel, when one of the characters, a James Wainwright, is retired and old and slowly succumbing to Alzheimer's Disease, a breaking news TV spot pops up on his TV, showing a picture of a very familiar UFO. After several encounters with a similar-shaped ship which was under the command of Captain Kirk when he was in his prime, Captain Janeway's starship pulls the memories of his times chasing aliens and seeing things out-of-this-world from the depths of his mind where they had long since been buried.

What I would have liked to have seen at the end was Mestral visiting James after he saw the image of Voyager on the TV, since they had a bit of a working relationship halfway through the novel. You know, just to see how he was doing since Mestral would have hardly have changed at all. But it didn't happen. Oh well.

Note: The reader of this novel would have to be extremely well-versed in the Star Trek universe to get a lot of what happened in this novel. I just squeezed in thanks to my curiosity and due to the fact that I'm finally watching Star Trek: Voyager from the beginning.

This novel takes elements from:
  • Star Trek: The Original Series episode "Assignment: Earth".
  • Star Trek: The Original Series episode "Tomorrow is Yesterday" with a cameo by Captain John Christopher.
  • Star Trek: Voyager episodes "Future's End & Future's End, Part II"
  • Star Trek: Enterprise episode "Carbon Creek"

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