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

View Poll Results: How would you rate Zero Sum Game?
Outstanding 38 22.22%
Above Average 78 45.61%
Average 45 26.32%
Below Average 8 4.68%
Poor 2 1.17%
Voters: 171. You may not vote on this poll

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Old October 28 2010, 05:49 PM   #91
Rush Limborg
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Re: Typhon Pact: Zero Sum Game Review thread

Almost Unique wrote: View Post
Thrawn wrote: View Post
I mean, he posted in this very thread about how he loves putting his favorite characters through hell, but no one actually goes through anything in this book.
You know, it's scary how much Sarina and Ezri have in common. Both idealists, both filled with a childlike wonder and enthusiasm for life...both vunerable-yet-intelligent, both "innocents" in a sense...and now....
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Old October 28 2010, 05:52 PM   #92
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Re: Typhon Pact: Zero Sum Game Review thread

Wow. This was the first Trek book I'd had time to read since the semester started, and I've been waiting for the Typhon Pact novels since they were announced. As patience isn't my strong suit, I raided Border's and Barnes and Noble on Sunday. No dice. I tried again after work on Monday, and SUCCESS!

I called my friend and made fun of him, because he didn't have a copy of the book, as he's been waiting for this nearly as long as I have.. I had to stop reading roughly 50 pages in to call him again... I was having a nerdgasm, and I had to share it with him.


There was much groaning and gnashing of teeth over not finding out what happens to Kira, but... it just makes me anticipate Rough Beasts of Empire more.

This was a pretty quick read, and had me completely absorbed in it most of the time. I really loved the insight into the Breen, and as usual, Mr. Mack killed more characters I'd really started to like. I love it. I might have to do a David Mack Death Counter in the future.

Moving on to the A and B plot... there were times where I felt for Bashir, like when he's on DS9 and reflects on his feelings. I want to say Bashir's never been one of my favorite DS9 characters... he whines a bit too much and is too sanctimonious at times, but it was really nice to see him get his hands dirty. I really liked his progression during the mission, from 'Killing is bad' to 'Kill them all'. More Aventine and Bacco would've been great, but all in all, wonderful novel all-around.



@ Supreme Dittodrone - I know, right? I wouldn't think Ezri and Sarina would have much in common, but... whoa. At the same time, I think there was a marked contrast between the two of them.
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Last edited by Hamilton; October 28 2010 at 05:55 PM. Reason: It doesn't like my spoilers.
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Old October 28 2010, 06:58 PM   #93
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Re: Typhon Pact: Zero Sum Game Review thread

Hamilton wrote: View Post
Wow. This was the first Trek book I'd had time to read since the semester started, and I've been waiting for the Typhon Pact novels since they were announced. As patience isn't my strong suit, I raided Border's and Barnes and Noble on Sunday. No dice. I tried again after work on Monday, and SUCCESS!

I called my friend and made fun of him, because he didn't have a copy of the book, as he's been waiting for this nearly as long as I have.. I had to stop reading roughly 50 pages in to call him again... I was having a nerdgasm, and I had to share it with him.
Amazon gave me a buzz today. They're now shipping the baby over. I should have it some time next week!

There was much groaning and gnashing of teeth over not finding out what happens to Kira, but... it just makes me anticipate Rough Beasts of Empire more.

This was a pretty quick read, and had me completely absorbed in it most of the time. I really loved the insight into the Breen, and as usual, Mr. Mack killed more characters I'd really started to like. I love it. I might have to do a David Mack Death Counter in the future.

Moving on to the A and B plot... there were times where I felt for Bashir, like when he's on DS9 and reflects on his feelings. I want to say Bashir's never been one of my favorite DS9 characters... he whines a bit too much and is too sanctimonious at times, but it was really nice to see him get his hands dirty. I really liked his progression during the mission, from 'Killing is bad' to 'Kill them all'. More Aventine and Bacco would've been great, but all in all, wonderful novel all-around.
AH!!! Nice...I love Bashir, but his holier-than-thou attidude towards Garak, Ross and Sloan in the show made me wish something would happen to knock him off the high-horse.

So...I wonder, is he beginning to accept Secion 31, or is that a line he's still unwilling to cross?

@ Supreme Dittodrone - I know, right? I wouldn't think Ezri and Sarina would have much in common, but... whoa. At the same time, I think there was a marked contrast between the two of them.
Yep. I'd say the similarities are something of an indication of what Julian wants in a woman....

I wouldn't be suprised if his first love, the dancer he mentions in "Armageddon Game", was very similar, personality-wise, to Sarina and Ezri....
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Old October 28 2010, 09:29 PM   #94
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Re: Typhon Pact: Zero Sum Game Review thread

Almost Unique wrote: View Post
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I mean, he posted in this very thread about how he loves putting his favorite characters through hell, but no one actually goes through anything in this book.
Not sure this would count as a favorite character, but...

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Old October 28 2010, 11:26 PM   #95
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Re: Typhon Pact: Zero Sum Game Review thread

Hamilton wrote: View Post

There was much groaning and gnashing of teeth over not finding out what happens to Kira, but... it just makes me anticipate Rough Beasts of Empire more.
What Major, no Captain, no (some other title) Kira has moved onto and how the station's new CO ascended to the position.

Kaamkulano wrote: View Post
I would like to believe the latter since barring a major traumatic life-changing event in the previous seven years, she doesn't strike me as capable of callously exploiting another person.
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Old October 29 2010, 09:42 PM   #96
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Re: Typhon Pact: Zero Sum Game Review thread

100 pages into it. Maybe Kira became the Kai, as in STO?
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Old October 29 2010, 10:29 PM   #97
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Re: Typhon Pact: Zero Sum Game Review thread

Ronald Held wrote: View Post
100 pages into it. Maybe Kira became the Kai, as in STO?
dear god i hope not. the STO storyline is just... i dunno how to describe it. a mockery to star trek
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Old October 30 2010, 06:20 AM   #98
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Re: Typhon Pact: Zero Sum Game Review thread

Thrawn wrote: View Post
Just finished it.

Spoiler free review:

I think this book is going to make a lot of people around here very happy, people who've been disappointed with the dark epic scope of everything recently and have been wanting some smaller-scale, more episodic stories. This book might feel the most like a TV episode of any Trek book published since Destiny, including the TOS books early this year. Minor but interesting strides in character development, A and B plot, small bits of exposition into a new culture that could be built upon later… it all feels exactly like it’s coming from a TV perspective.

Which on the one hand is kind of a nice change of pace. The Voyager and Titan books last year were pretty emotionally heavy, the TOS books this year tried to fill in gaps but mostly sucked, and the Destiny & fallout from before all that was epic and enormous. A quick little tossed-off action thriller is something that hasn’t been seen in a while, and it’s welcome for that. And as part of a Typhon Pact exploration, this does a great job setting the political scene and establishing how it all operates; there are plenty of behind-the-scenes glimpses into the Breen relationship with the Romulans, and the cold war aspect in general is beautifully done.

But on the other hand, this is the first 24th century novel to arrive in a year, it's marketed as a fairly major event, and the best parts about it are the hints about the ongoing DS9 story that another novel might pick up… eventually. Especially coming from David Mack, who hasn’t written a novel that wasn’t HOLYSHIT epic since his Wolverine thing, I found it a little disappointing, I won’t lie. I mean, he posted in this very thread about how he loves putting his favorite characters through hell, but no one actually goes through anything in this book. There’s a strong implication that major, soul-wrenching things are going to happen soon in these characters' lives, which I find excellent, but the character development actually present was completely shallow and unconvincing.

And no one on the Aventine did anything that any other crew couldn’t have done. I actually really like the Aventine crew, and was hoping I’d get something new from them, but even the quirky banter thing that everyone had going in staff meetings in Destiny was notably absent here. The attempts at punchlines from Dax and Bowers didn’t do much for me, and ultimately nothing was even as interesting as Kedair’s one-chapter investigation from A Singular Destiny.

In general, I think that this is the kind of book that would’ve fit in perfectly with the DS9 relaunch as it worked before, much like the Section 31 and Gateways books did: fun one-off adventures that played with larger stories around the edges. But getting only one or at most two books to continue these particular threads each year, and especially promising “THE SAGA OF DEEP SPACE NINE WILL CONTINUE” at the end when I know that it won’t until February 2012 at the earliest, I find this kind of incremental development unsatisfying. The book provided several brilliant hints, glimpses, or foreshadowings, and the like, but it didn’t actually do much of anything. Not what I was hoping for, unfortunately.
I agree with this for the most part. I feel like Zero Sum Game was a great tease for things to come. Is there anything wrong with that? No, not in my opinion, because it's leaving me wanting more. I enjoyed the story although I would have loved to have seen more Aventine. The ending was quite the plesant shock.

David Mack has easily become my favorite Star Trek author.
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Old October 30 2010, 12:28 PM   #99
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Re: Typhon Pact: Zero Sum Game Review thread

I'm sick of teasing myself, give me the fucking story or don't bother.
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Old October 30 2010, 01:45 PM   #100
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Re: Typhon Pact: Zero Sum Game Review thread

^ I wouldn't quite go THAT far. I think stuff like this, foreshadowing and hinting at larger stories, was a real strength of the DS9 Relaunch. Heck, more recently, even Vanguard I think has done really well with each book feeling like a small piece in a much larger story, as plot threads slowly develop over the course of several novels. But I think Vanguard succeeds more on this publication timescale because a lot of hinting and foreshadowing also accompanies a steady increase in EPIC AWESOME, where here after the tremendous events of both DS9 Relaunch to date and also the last few 24-th century novels in general, Zero Sum Game feels like moving backwards.

Or maybe I'm overthinking it; it just seemed like nothing really happened, and I was underwhelmed.
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Old October 30 2010, 06:48 PM   #101
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Re: Typhon Pact: Zero Sum Game Review thread

Thrawn wrote: View Post
^ I wouldn't quite go THAT far. I think stuff like this, foreshadowing and hinting at larger stories, was a real strength of the DS9 Relaunch. Heck, more recently, even Vanguard I think has done really well with each book feeling like a small piece in a much larger story, as plot threads slowly develop over the course of several novels. But I think Vanguard succeeds more on this publication timescale because a lot of hinting and foreshadowing also accompanies a steady increase in EPIC AWESOME, where here after the tremendous events of both DS9 Relaunch to date and also the last few 24-th century novels in general, Zero Sum Game feels like moving backwards.

Or maybe I'm overthinking it; it just seemed like nothing really happened, and I was underwhelmed.

Oh don't mind me, I'm just venting a bit.
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Old October 31 2010, 04:10 AM   #102
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Re: Typhon Pact: Zero Sum Game Review thread

JD wrote: View Post
I noticed when I got the Nookbook version that it says it is 269, but both Barnes & Noble and Simon & Schuster's websites list it as 352. So is the number on the number on the sites a typo, or is something wrong with the Nook version?
EDIT: I just checked and it even says 352 on the details page of the nook version.
That probably the number of pages for the paperback.
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Old October 31 2010, 11:49 AM   #103
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Re: Typhon Pact: Zero Sum Game Review thread

Hamilton wrote: View Post
Moving on to the A and B plot... there were times where I felt for Bashir, like when he's on DS9 and reflects on his feelings. I want to say Bashir's never been one of my favorite DS9 characters... he whines a bit too much and is too sanctimonious at times, but it was really nice to see him get his hands dirty. I really liked his progression during the mission, from 'Killing is bad' to 'Kill them all'. More Aventine and Bacco would've been great, but all in all, wonderful novel all-around.

I go backwards and forwards on that - are his actions realistic? Are they well-written? Do they make sense? Yes to all three... yet... in a way I can't really articulate it's not what I actually want to read about in a Trek novel, a Doctor Bashir who's solution to a problem is to
doesn't seem to be very creative to me. Yes, it's completely realistic in the context provided but I'm reading a Star Trek book not Tom Clancy (although there is a argument there is more fantasy in a Tom Clancy book... )
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Old October 31 2010, 02:54 PM   #104
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Re: Typhon Pact: Zero Sum Game Review thread

Oh and I'm surprised that nobody picked up on the (New) Star Trek movie reference.
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Old October 31 2010, 03:28 PM   #105
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Re: Typhon Pact: Zero Sum Game Review thread

JoeZhang wrote: View Post
Oh and I'm surprised that nobody picked up on the (New) Star Trek movie reference.
I've seen that referenced around these parts, made me chuckle when I read it.

Anyway, I finished reading Zero Sum Game yesterday morning, it was ok but not great. I think the anticipation of it and remembering how good on the whole Destiny was, personally left me a little disappointed. There was one point in the story where in focused on Bashir and Douglas for what seemed like a good one hundred pages and I was wanting to find out what was happening onboard Aventine or even back in Paris.
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