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Old April 12 2010, 03:34 PM   #42
Lieutenant Commander
Location: Durham, NC
Re: Star Trek: Unspoken Truth - Discussion (Spoilers)

I've read 'Burning Dreams' and 'Catalyst of Sorrows' and so I had high expectations with 'Unspoken Truth'. I didn't like it at all. The moment it came out I came on here and saw that many were giving it great reviews and so thought this was going to be one of those 'must read' books of the year. To me, this just was beyond horrible. The writing and plot line disturbed me the most with this book. The plot is so generic and one that's been done to death - the hero/heroine is tempted by the bad guy to turn on his/her supporters and friends. What also got me about this book is that the two plots never really come together. There's the plot of Saavik seeking a routine, uncomplicated assignment following the events of Star Trek III and IV and that's exactly what the reader is treated for 200 pages of the novel. I was bored to absolute tears and had to force myself not to give up on the book 100 pages in. Then, awkwardly, the Romulan plot kicks in around page 208 ... and it is completely rushed through, contrived and predictable. What a waste of a book.

This has been my complaint about a lot of Trek lit over the past year or two. It feels like many books have gone from being episode/movie worthy with depth, emotion and true creativity springing forth from the pages to being nothing more than fan-fic with a $7.99 price tag attached to it. 'Unspoken Truth' feels like fan-fiction run amuck. The character of Saavik, though she only appeared in 2 movies and a millisecond of Star Trek IV seems ... off. She doesn't strike me at all as someone who'd make it to the Enterprise and would become Spock's protege. This book paints her as a pretty much rebellious, unstable, emotional and irrational character most of the time. One moment she's in angst over what she and Spock did on the Genesis planet, the next she's leaping into bed with someone she hardly knows. One moment she's trying to be a wise, patient, stoic science officer and the next she's going AWOL and being a mad woman. The constant appearance of the phrase 'unspoken truth' along with every thought and a majority of Saavik's dialogue ending with an exclamation point just killed what little was left with the book in terms of good material.

Say what you will but this is not even close to being a great novel. Years ago I can't see it having held up but in today's Trek lit market where authors seem to be given the green light to do whatever they want and churn out amateur fan-fiction disguised as professional, high-class lit it's all fine and accepted. As much as this book has been discussed and hyped over the years, sorry to say, it was a mostly wasted literary opportunity and horrible, dull, weak novel.
"The almighty Prime Directive. Take my advice. It's less of a headache if you just ignore it." --Admiral Janeway, Endgame
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