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Old October 14 2008, 03:53 PM   #206
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Re: Greater Than The Sum Review *** POTENTIAL SPOILERS ***

nx1701g wrote: View Post
First I didn't expect to like T'Ryssa Chen when I first read about her and now she's probably my favorite of the new arrivals to Captain Picard's chain of command. She's uncertain about herself and is a very complex character, which is welcome.
Glad to hear it!

I like Choudhry and I'd say she's my second favorite of the new crew.

And this was the progression for the characters that we should have seen in Nemesis. When Nemesis was announced Logan said he wanted to show the characters progress on to the next stage of their lives. He did an average job compared to what Christopher has introduced. Picard's storyline and marriage to Doctor Crusher was something that I thought was needed, and everything he was thinking and feeling seemed real.
To give credit where it's due, it was my editor Margaret Clark (and perhaps Dave Mack) who'd decided to have Picard and Beverly start a family, though it was left up to me whether to have them actually get married.

Ferd Burfel wrote: View Post
Overall I score the book very, very high. I loved the fact that most of the characters we know and love were presented EXACTLY like I was watching the show.
Thank you!

I loved Geordi being forced to think about and deal with the Data/B-4 issue. I hope more comes of that, because I think that just ignoring it book after book will start to upset a lot of the book reading faithful.
I hope so too...

I also hope we get more of Geordi. Him and Worf are now the two biggest rocks Picard has, and I'd love to see Geordi start playing that up. We've seen an alternate future where he is a Captain, and Riker asked him about being an XO. Maybe now that everything is changed and he is closely examining his personal life we'll see him make that move more towards leadership and possibly the command track.
Then again, we've also seen an alternate future in which he left Starfleet, became a successful novelist, and married Leah Brahms...

Chen doesn't bother me too much. I agree with what Chris said about her being intended to be annoying and abrasive.
Well, that's overstating it a little. She's meant to be endearingly irritating.

The only part I groaned at was the Enterprise going by itself. It seems to me Starfleet would want a few ships going, not just one. A small fleet to deal with a Borg threat makes a little more sense to me.
Well, one, Starfleet had lost a fair number of ships to the Borg supercube three months before, and two, the Frankenstein was a fairly small vessel and the E-E had transphasic torpedoes and the multivector agent.

Kadohata falls into that same category. All the talk and discussion makes you wonder why she's out there. It seems silly to me to talk so much about missing the family, but it's out of choice. It almost seems overplayed she's unhappy, when the solution is within her grasp. It makes the character seem a little weak to me.
But that's just it -- she'd be just as unhappy if she gave up her career for the sake of family. Either way, she'd be cut off from half of who she is. This is a choice a lot of people in real life have to make. Lots of people do choose to pursue careers that keep them away from their families for long stretches, but that doesn't mean they love their families any less.

I can't think of a great replacement, but Data left big shoes to fill and it doesn't seem like she's doing a very good job.
Data was doing three jobs at once -- second officer, ops manager, science officer. That's an insane workload for any human being to carry, and Kadohata succeeded at doing so for several months, although it put her under excessive stress. Now, with Elfiki becoming science officer, Kadohata's down to doing two jobs, which is still quite a burden for one human being, but she seems to be doing just fine to me.

So I know it seems like I nitpicked a lot (and I did), but I really did like this novel a lot. It was the first Bennett novel that I've read, but now I'm on his fourth. All are great works IMO. Keep it up.
Written Worlds -- Christopher L. Bennett's blog and webpage
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