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Trek Literature "...Good words. That's where ideas begin."

View Poll Results: Grade "Star Trek: Destiny: Mere Mortals"
Excellent 98 77.78%
Above Average 15 11.90%
Average 10 7.94%
Below Average 1 0.79%
Poor 2 1.59%
Voters: 126. You may not vote on this poll

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Old November 2 2008, 12:29 AM   #91
MMCL
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Re: Star Trek: Destiny: Mere Mortals - SPOILER Thread

I am newcomer to Trek fiction - in the last three/four months I have devoured nearly 70 books, give or take. I am absolutely loving them, and the Destiny trilogy is easily going to be one of my faves (and one to re-read many many times).

A few cracking moments for me:

- The argument between Troi and Vale on the balcony reminded me of badass Troi pretending to be a Romulan Tal'Shiar member. I don't find Troi out of character or annoying - just struggling with difficult emotions.
- The whole Erika story is quite fascinating, especially Erika's interaction with Inyx. It is one of the real draws to the trilogy.
- Captain Dax just 'feels' right in my opinion, loving her interaction with Picard. Also really like the development of Sam Bowers.
- Anything Christine Vale does is just amazing - she is a great character - more Vale please.
- I have really enjoyed the Presidential stuff (I just bought Articles of the Federation because of the bits in this trilogy!)
- Riker's decision to leave was interesting but wholly in character and something I was hoping for (all three ships leading uberfight against the Borg) however I do wonder what will happen to Erika when she leaves as it was quite clear she couldn't.

Can't wait for the last part to come out.
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Old November 2 2008, 01:36 AM   #92
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Re: Star Trek: Destiny: Mere Mortals - SPOILER Thread

JeremyW wrote: View Post
2. Seven's endgame solution that got scoffed.... did NOT see that one coming, but in the sense of the situation, it made the most sense. I liked how all those in the halls of power scoffed at the idea of using it, but in the end, Seven was RIGHT.
Is this same endgame solution that was used in Before Dishonor?
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Old November 2 2008, 02:12 AM   #93
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Re: Star Trek: Destiny: Mere Mortals - SPOILER Thread

MMCL wrote: View Post
- Anything Christine Vale does is just amazing - she is a great character - more Vale please.
You may already know this, since I don't know which 70 books you've devoured of late , but Vale has made a bunch of appearances in assorted books:
  • SCE: The Belly of the Beast by Dean Wesley Smith (eBook; reprinted in SCE: Have Tech, Will Travel)
    TNG: Gateways: Doors Into Chaos by Robert Greenberger
    "The Other Side" by Robert Greenberger (in Gateways: What Lay Beyond)
    SCE: The Art of the Deal by Glenn Greenberg (eBook; reprinted in Corps of Engineers: Creative Couplings)
    The Brave and the Bold Book 2 by Keith R.A. DeCandido (cameo only)
    Vulcan's Soul Book 3: Epiphany by Josepha Sherman & Susan Shwartz
    SCE: Security by Keith R.A. DeCandido (eBook; reprinted in Corps of Engineers: Wounds)
    TNG: A Time to be Born by John Vornholt
    TNG: A Time to Die by John Vornholt
    TNG: A Time to Sow by Dayton Ward & Kevin Dilmore
    TNG: A Time to Harvest by Dayton Ward & Kevin Dilmore
    TNG: A Time to Love by Robert Greenberger
    TNG: A Time to Hate by Robert Greenberger
    TNG: A Time to Kill by David Mack
    TNG: A Time to Heal by David Mack
    TNG: A Time for War, a Time for Peace by Keith R.A. DeCandido
    Corps of Engineers: Remembrance of Things Past Books 1-2 by Terri Osborne (eBooks; not available in print yet)
    Titan: Taking Wing by Michael A. Martin & Andy Mangels
    Titan: The Red King by Andy Mangels & Michael A. Martin
    Titan: Orion's Hounds by Christopher L. Bennett
    Titan: Sword of Damocles by Christopher L. Bennett
    Captain's Glory by William Shatner, with Judith & Garfield Reeves-Stevens (cameo only)


- I have really enjoyed the Presidential stuff (I just bought Articles of the Federation because of the bits in this trilogy!)
I hope you enjoy it!
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Old November 2 2008, 02:31 AM   #94
Brendan Moody
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Re: Star Trek: Destiny: Mere Mortals - SPOILER Thread

JWolf wrote: View Post
I'd like to know who voted average and why.
Well, I was one of them. And since you ask...

In some ways it's hard to rate Mere Mortals on its own and without having read Lost Souls, since Destiny is one story and aspects that appear to be loose ends or unnecessary elements may turn out to be very important in the end. For now, though, I've decided to rate the book as a single unit, with the caveat that I might change my mind when I've read the whole trilogy.

Even taking it as a single unit I had some trouble judging Mere Mortals. On the one hand, I read it in about 24 hours and was enjoying it most of the time as an in-the-moment reading experience; on those terms, I might have rated it "above average." On the other hand, I felt like the book suffered from rather spare plotting and a lot of the character work, while interesting, was excessively straightforward. Enterprise and Aventine spend most of the book chasing down the subspace tunnels, and then the Caeliar close them before the Starfleet characters can accomplish anything, so that plotline feels a bit aimless. (Perhaps Lost Souls will reveal that this isn't so.) The Titan thread has a couple foiled escape attempts that likewise contribute nothing much to the narrative momentum, and then an abrupt ending. That ending is the capstone to the Hernandez plot, which was easily the best worked out and most satisfying in the book, though again, on a level of plot it doesn't reveal much one couldn't have guessed from the climax to Gods of Night. The two Bacco/admirals chapters are also great reading, but they don't feel particularly integrated into the storyline; that strand of the story is in the awkward middle ground between being a full-fledged part of the story and a fleeting cameo. The bottom line for me is that the only substantive developments here are the Borg armada launching and Hernandez rescuing Titan, both of which happen at the tail end of the book. Despite the apparent busy-ness of the different threads, I'll disagree with Steve Roby's comment above: this had a bad case of middle volume syndrome. Or, at least, it appeared to; as I said above, Lost Souls may demonstrate that the plotting is tighter than I've suggested.

Given the limitations of the plot, the character work takes the brunt of the burden in making Mere Mortals succeed, and it mostly meets that burden. My one issue is that the conflicts tended to be telegraphed through expressions of concern from friends or counselors, who will say "Don't you think you have this flaw" before the book has really shown us that said flaw exists. Obviously balancing all the different characters and situations in this crossover is a difficult task, so I don't want to complain too much about this, but I thought it deserved a mention.

So that's how I feel about the book. I really liked reading it, but on further consideration I felt it lacked a certain tightness. Ask me again when I've finished the trilogy and I may feel differently.
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Old November 2 2008, 03:00 AM   #95
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Re: Star Trek: Destiny: Mere Mortals - SPOILER Thread

[quote=casey;2244539]
LutherSloan wrote: View Post
...I liked the way Seven was acting, and I was satisfied at the end with the 7,000 cubes showing up, and I wanted to hear Seven tell Jellico "I told you so!"
I hope they both survive to do something useful about it if she does so, and that they both enjoy the consequences as best they can for as long as possible!
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Old November 2 2008, 03:32 AM   #96
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Re: Star Trek: Destiny: Mere Mortals - SPOILER Thread

Stephen! wrote: View Post
JeremyW wrote: View Post
2. Seven's endgame solution that got scoffed.... did NOT see that one coming, but in the sense of the situation, it made the most sense. I liked how all those in the halls of power scoffed at the idea of using it, but in the end, Seven was RIGHT.
Is this same endgame solution that was used in Before Dishonor?
No, it was the idea that the Federation should create a thalaron weapon like the one Shinzon was going to use against Earth, and use it against the Borg.
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Old November 2 2008, 03:47 AM   #97
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Re: Star Trek: Destiny: Mere Mortals - SPOILER Thread

Loved the book.

Maybe it's because I read it just before Halloween, but the scene of Ericka's "Change" reminded me a great deal of the Universal Frankenstein movie. The dark, stormy night. The tech-filled lab located in a high tower. The opening roof. A scientist working to thwart natural order. Was this imagery intentionally alluding to this film or am I reading too much into this scene?

Captain Dax's arc in the book was superbly handled. Her initial deference to Picard at the beginning all the way to her telling Jean-Luc at the end that he can do what he likes: she has a quadrant to help protect. Ezri is proving herself to be a nice fit for the Aventine's big chair. I look forward to the further adventures of Captian Dax and the good ship Aventine, beyond even those books with "Destiny" in their title.

On the subject of Aventine, when can I buy a Kedair action figure? That battle scene was the stuff of great popcorn movies. Poor, poor Hirogen.

The Tholian ambassador mentioned something about the Taurus reach -- is this a New Frontier reference?

One final note: good work, Mr. Mack. Can't wait for Lost Souls.
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Old November 2 2008, 03:50 AM   #98
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Re: Star Trek: Destiny: Mere Mortals - SPOILER Thread

Sto-Vo-Kory wrote: View Post
The Tholian ambassador mentioned something about the Taurus reach -- is this a New Frontier reference?
No, Vanguard. The turbulent history between the Federation and Tholians in the Taurus Reach is spelled out in that series.
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Old November 2 2008, 08:25 AM   #99
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Re: Star Trek: Destiny: Mere Mortals - SPOILER Thread

Sto-Vo-Kory wrote: View Post
Loved the book.
Thanks!

Maybe it's because I read it just before Halloween, but the scene of Ericka's "Change" reminded me a great deal of the Universal Frankenstein movie. The dark, stormy night. The tech-filled lab located in a high tower. The opening roof. A scientist working to thwart natural order. Was this imagery intentionally alluding to this film or am I reading too much into this scene?
I wasn't specifically seeking to evoke or allude to Frankenstein, but inasmuch as that work has become iconic, I'd have to say that it seems at the very least to have been a subconscious influence on the scenes involving Valerian's death and Hernandez's catom-driven Change.
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Old November 2 2008, 12:42 PM   #100
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Re: Star Trek: Destiny: Mere Mortals - SPOILER Thread

  • The Brave and the Bold Book 2 by Keith R.A. DeCandido (cameo only)
  • Vulcan's Soul Book 3: Epiphany by Josepha Sherman & Susan Shwartz
  • Corps of Engineers: Remembrance of Things Past Books 1-2 by Terri Osborne (eBooks; not available in print yet)
  • Captain's Glory by William Shatner, with Judith & Garfield Reeves-Stevens (cameo only)
I was missing these so just bought them this morning Thanks for the heads up! I'm lucky that I travel a lot with work so get to read a lot.

I hope you enjoy it!
I'm sure I will - there were some bits about the election in another book I read, they were great.
I checked and counted: 87 items in my ebook collection.

But for some reason I can't buy the CoE omnibus #8 Aftermath in ebook format, and that's really frustrating. That and I feel bad as I haven't always read all the different stories in order!
I will probably start over and plough through them all in the correct order.


...Back to Mere Mortals...
I think Mack has done an excellent job building the menace whilst not revealing too much about the exact nature of the threat until right at the end.
At each stage, he's upped the ante and ensured the calmer moments sufficiently balanced the various more aggressive scenes. He's given the Borg 'teeth' again and that's a good thing.

I can't wait for the conclusion.
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Old November 2 2008, 01:25 PM   #101
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Re: Star Trek: Destiny: Mere Mortals - SPOILER Thread

mcmac wrote: View Post
Of all the things we have to talk about - we're grousing about typos?
Since we're on the subject of such minor things, one thing I was wondering is why the Defiant is always referred to as "Defiant" but never, "the Defiant"

Since it happens with other ships, "the Enterprise", "the Aventine", "the Columbia" etc

Maybe I just notice obscure things ....
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Old November 2 2008, 03:04 PM   #102
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Re: Star Trek: Destiny: Mere Mortals - SPOILER Thread

Stephen! wrote: View Post
Since we're on the subject of such minor things, one thing I was wondering is why the Defiant is always referred to as "Defiant" but never, "the Defiant"

Since it happens with other ships, "the Enterprise", "the Aventine", "the Columbia" etc
In general, I think proper naval parlance is to use no article before a ship's name, and you see that reflected in later Trek shows -- it's always "Voyager" rather than "the Voyager," and NX-01 is called "Enterprise" rather than "the Enterprise." But in the books, both tend to be used, and I think it's often a matter of what sounds better in context, what flows better. For instance, Riker's ship is just called "Titan," which I think sounds better than "the Titan" and is easier to say, without too many t/th sounds too close together.

Although I do recall the Defiant being routinely referenced with an article in the show itself, so I'm not sure what you're referring to here.
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Old November 2 2008, 05:17 PM   #103
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Re: Star Trek: Destiny: Mere Mortals - SPOILER Thread

Apologies for this slight derailment of the thread, but..................


MMCL wrote: View Post
I was missing these so just bought them this morning Thanks for the heads up! I'm lucky that I travel a lot with work so get to read a lot.
Cool. Just remember that her appearances in both The Brave and the Bold and Captain's Glory are very very brief, and her role in Epiphany is fairly small. However, her role in Remembrance... is more substantial, including a flashback to her serving on the U.S.S. O'Keefe as a newly promoted junior-grade lieutenant.


I hope you enjoy it!
I'm sure I will - there were some bits about the election in another book I read, they were great.
If you read the A Time to... series, that would be the finale, A Time for War, a Time for Peace. Articles picks up where that book left off. For that matter, the Destiny trilogy picks up about a month after Articles ends....


But for some reason I can't buy the CoE omnibus #8 Aftermath in ebook format, and that's really frustrating. That and I feel bad as I haven't always read all the different stories in order
Weird. You can always get the individual eBooks in the Aftermath omnibus (Aftermath, Ishtar Rising Book 1, Ishtar Rising Book 2, Buying Time, Collective Hindsight Book 1, Collective Hindsight Book 2, The Demon Book 1, and The Demon Book 2).
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Old November 2 2008, 05:33 PM   #104
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Re: Star Trek: Destiny: Mere Mortals - SPOILER Thread

KRAD wrote: View Post
that would be the finale,A Time for War, a Time for Peace
Something I was wondering about that. How come "A Time for War/A Time for Peace was single, rather than being spread across two books, like the others? Or is that just how it was and there wasn't any particular reason?
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Old November 2 2008, 05:49 PM   #105
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Re: Star Trek: Destiny: Mere Mortals - SPOILER Thread

Stephen! wrote: View Post
Something I was wondering about that. How come "A Time for War/A Time for Peace was single, rather than being spread across two books, like the others? Or is that just how it was and there wasn't any particular reason?
It was originally planned as two books, but (among other reasons I'm sure KRAD will go into) it was felt that a one-volume finale would be more dramatic, and Articles of the Federation was developed as a way of using some of the ideas that would have gone into the duology.
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