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Old October 20 2012, 01:02 AM   #38
Sci
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Re: Typhon Pact: Should I keep going?

RonG wrote: View Post
Ktrek has a point, I'm sad to say.

Destiny *is* the masterpiece it's supposedly made to be IMHO, but excluding that trilogy, Vanguard, Voyager , and select few novels, the overall quality has been a bit down, compared to the offerings of the early-to-mid 2000's.
Since I like lists, let's go ahead and see what novels have been published since Destiny finished four years ago.
  • TOS: Errand of Fury: Sacrifices of War by Kevin Ryan * * *
  • MU: Shards and Shadows (anthology) #
  • ST: A Singular Destiny by Keith R.A. DeCandido * * * *
  • TTN: Over a Torrent Sea by Christopher L. Bennett * * *
  • VOY: Full Circle by Kirsten Beyer * * * * *
  • NF: Treason by Peter David #
  • NuTOS: Star Trek by Alan Dean Foster #
  • VAN: Open Secrets by Dayton Ward * * * *
  • TOS: Troublesome Minds by Dave Galanter #
  • TNG: Losing the Peace by William Leisner * * * *
  • DSN: The Soul Key by Olivia Woods #
  • DSN: The Never-Ending Sacrifice by Una McCormack * * * * *
  • ENT: The Romluan War: Beneath the Raptor's Wing by Michael A. Martin * * 1/2
  • VOY: Unworthy by Kirsten Beyer +
  • TTN: Synthesis by James Swallow #
  • VAN: Precipice by David Mack * * * *
  • MU: The Sorrows of Empire by David Mack * * * * *
  • TOS: Inception by S.D. Perry & Britta Dennison * * *
  • ST: Seven Deadly Sins (anthology) #
  • TOS: Unspoken Truth by Margaret Wander Bonanno * * * *
  • STO: The Needs of the Many by Michael A. Martin * 1/2
  • TOS: The Children of Kings by Dave Stern * * *
  • TP: Zero Sum Game by David Mack * * * * *
  • TP: Seize the Fire by Michael A. Martin #
  • MyU: Shattered Light (anthology) * * * *
  • TP: Rough Beasts of Empire by David R. George III * * * * *
  • TP: Paths of Disharmony by Dayton Ward * * * *
  • TNG: Indistinguishable from Magic by David McIntee * * * *
  • NF: Blind Man's Bluff by Peter David #
  • DTI: Watching the Clock by Christopher L. Bennett * * * *
  • VOY: Children of the Storm by Kirsten Beyer +
  • VAN: Declassified (anthology) * * * *
  • ST: Cast No Shadow by James Swallow * * * *
  • TOS: A Choice of Catastrophes by Steve Mollmann & Michael Schuster #
  • VAN: What Judgments Come by Dayton Ward & Kevin Dilmore * * * *
  • TP: The Struggle Within by Christopher L. Bennett * * * *
  • ENT: The Romulan War: To Brave the Storm by Michael A. Martin * * 1/2
  • MU: Rise Like Lions by David Mack * * * *
  • TOS: The Rings of Time by Greg Cox #
  • TOS: That Which Divides by Dayton Ward #
  • VAN: Storming Heaven by David Mack +
  • DTI: Forgotten History by Christopher L. Bennett * * * *
  • TP: Plagues of Night by David R. George III * * * * *
  • TP: Raise the Dawn by David R. George III * * * * *
  • TTN: Fallen Gods by Michael A. Martin * * 1/2
  • VOY: The Eternal Tide by Kirsten Beyer +
  • TP: Brinkmanship by Una McCormack * * * * *
That's 51 novels published since Destiny.

Now, I've marked the ones I think were deserving of 4 or 5 stars that I've read -- * for a 4-star, ** for a 5-star, and @ for a three-star. I've marked with a + those novels which I know are widely well-regarded, even if I haven't read them yet.

(Edit: Replaced the above with the actual number of stars for each book. "+" remains for well-regarded books I haven't read. Inserted "#" for other books I haven't read yet. End edit.)

So, out of 51, the total number of books that I think are either worth four or five stars or which I know to be well-regarded, is 27: 8 five-stars, 15 four-stars, and 4 well-regardeds. That's a 52.94% success rate (15.69% five-stars, 29.41% four-stars, 7.84% well-regardeds). The total number of books that are three stars or higher or well-regarded is 31 -- a 60.78% success rate.

Soooo..... I gotta say, I don't think the book line post-Destiny has been inferior. I think that most of the time, they're fun; more often than not, they're above average; and that around a fifth of the time, they knock it out of the park. And that's pretty much what I thought of the line pre-Destiny. Yeah, Destiny was amazing, but so was Articles of the Federation; so was A Time to Kill/Heal; so was Vanguard: Reap the Whirlwind; so was Terok Nor: Day of the Vipers; so was Crucible: McCoy - Provenance of Shadows; so was TNG: The Buried Age; so was S.C.E.: Wildfire; so was DSN: Hollow Men; so was Serpents Among the Ruins; so was The Art of the Impossible; etc etc etc.

I think there's a tendency to be so blinded by the quality of Destiny as to forget that it is not the beginning and the end, nor the apex, of Star Trek fiction, and to forget that there were a lot of really brilliant books published before Destiny and have been a lot of brilliant books published since Destiny.


but excluding that trilogy, Vanguard, Voyager
For the record, post-Destiny, that's 9 books: Full Circle, Open Secrets, Unworthy, Precipice, Children of the Storm, Declassified, What Judgments Come, Storming Heaven, and The Eternal Tide. That's quite a few exceptions to the trend you're arguing exists.

I don't think an influx of new writers is THE solution (as it seems it's happening constantly and on an ongoing basis anyway), but rather new concepts and series.
I am at a loss as to how one might describe the creation of the Typhon Pact, the launch of the Department of Temporal Investigations series, the publication of novels taking the story of the Mirror Universe forward and uniting them with the unique spin on Emperor Spock vis a vis Memory Omega, the continued publication of Myriad Universes anthologies, a willingness to so fundamentally shake up the status quo as we've seen in David R. George's novels, etc.... I really don't see how that could be described as anything except new concepts and new series.
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Last edited by Sci; October 20 2012 at 08:20 AM.
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