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

View Poll Results: Rate Storming Heaven.
Outstanding 60 69.77%
Above Average 23 26.74%
Average 2 2.33%
Below Average 0 0%
Poor 1 1.16%
Voters: 86. You may not vote on this poll

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Old May 24 2012, 11:39 PM   #211
MatthiasRussell
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Re: Vanguard: Storming Heaven by David Mack Review Thread (Spoilers!)

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Maybe if demand is strong enough, they'll invest in cloning David so we can have that many MORE novels!
Dear God, no. Then I'd have to split my royalties and share my scotch. The horror!
It worked out fairly well for Michael Keaton in Multiplicity and if it doesn't you just do what Hugh Jackman did in the Prestige.

Besides, getting drunk with yourself could be fun.
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Old May 25 2012, 01:04 AM   #212
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Re: Vanguard: Storming Heaven by David Mack Review Thread (Spoilers!)

MatthiasRussell wrote: View Post
Besides, getting drunk with yourself could be fun.
It would be terrible. I already know all my own jokes and stories.
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Old May 25 2012, 07:11 PM   #213
Jedi Marso
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Re: Vanguard: Storming Heaven by David Mack Review Thread (Spoilers!)

Finished the series this past week- the Vanguard series remains the only new Trek lit I've read in well over a decade, and I'm glad I took the journey. The TOS era has been and always shall be my favorite era, and the writing team brought it to life.

It was funny, but even some of the descriptions of equipment and lighting and such brought to mind TOS production values, which made me wonder if the writers were shooting for that or not, but it happened in my mind even so.

Loved the tight timeline scripting- the way events were interwoven with the Enterprise five year mission and the mentions (and sometimes ripples) of TOS series missions affecting events in the Reach.

Although I laugh like hell when I read them, I thought there were just a couple too many 'Zett's dead, baby' little moments. Very cleverly done but they jerk me out of the milieu. Hard to resist for a witty writer, though.

Very good stuff overall, and the only thing that killed me at the end was the loss of the station itself. Starbase 47 had a lot more stories and adventures in it, I felt, but it did sort of give a sense of finality to the series.

My new hierarchy of top Trek lit is as follows:

1. The Final Reflection
2. Federation
3. The Vanguard Series

And nobody should be insulted by making #3 on that list (actually filling out the top ten, if you want to count it that way). I started reading Trek books back in the late 70's and didn't really stop until the mid-90's.
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Old May 25 2012, 07:16 PM   #214
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Re: Vanguard: Storming Heaven by David Mack Review Thread (Spoilers!)

One other point: So that's what happened to Ceti Alpha VI, eh?

And here I was laughing at that one ep of Enterprise when the survivors from Earth ended up on Ceti Alpha V. I was thinking: "poor, stupid bastards!" But I guess in the case of the Vanguard canon those survivors in that timeline would have been okay after all. At least until the Xindi found them.
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Old June 12 2012, 11:13 AM   #215
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Re: Vanguard: Storming Heaven by David Mack Review Thread (Spoilers!)

Wow...what a story...what an ending. And no wonder the Tholians STILL carry a grudge.

This was epic...the ending bittersweet. Glad some found peace and/or happiness in the end. Good to see Kirk and co once again, too.
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Old June 12 2012, 05:34 PM   #216
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Re: Vanguard: Storming Heaven by David Mack Review Thread (Spoilers!)

^ Glad you dug it!
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Old June 13 2012, 05:22 AM   #217
WarsTrek1993
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Re: Vanguard: Storming Heaven by David Mack Review Thread (Spoilers!)

The book was great, and I did love the little nod to TNG and DS9:

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Old June 13 2012, 03:17 PM   #218
MatthiasRussell
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Re: Vanguard: Storming Heaven by David Mack Review Thread (Spoilers!)

^ I thought that was a nice touch. It was interesting seeing these future antagonists mentioned as known entities on the frontier. I remember reading that part and thinking, "You guys have NO idea."
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Old June 14 2012, 07:19 AM   #219
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Re: Vanguard: Storming Heaven by David Mack Review Thread (Spoilers!)

Finished it up the other day <sob>. A great rollicking adventure with a beginning, middle and an end. It did seem a bit rushed to me. Too many things wrapped up a bit too fast. All in all though, taking the series as a whole, it's the best Trek novel series by far. Bravo!

A few little nits in the finale:





The biggest letdown was the final fate of Reyes.



There were deaths that were shocking, surprising and unexpected. Some died that I thought would live. Some lived that I felt sure would die, One in particular felt like they were just hanging around until the end. Wish they had more to do in the rest of the book before meeting their end.

8/10 for storming heaven
9.5/10 for the series as a whole

And, as cool as the explanation was, I still have trouble believing that Terrell and Chekov and the crew of the Reliant can't count!
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Old June 14 2012, 03:13 PM   #220
MatthiasRussell
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Re: Vanguard: Storming Heaven by David Mack Review Thread (Spoilers!)

^Wow. I agree that the destruction of the Omari Ekon should have been covered better. It was such a major player in the series that I feel its destruction meritted a chapter of its own rather than a passing mention. But on the other 2 points, I couldn't disagree more.

If the Enterprise hadn't entered the fray, every one of the main characters would have been killed. I honestly wouldn't have believed them winning, nay, surviving, with the resources they had at the beginning of the battle. Besides, with the Enterprise being prominent in Book 1 and the series shedding light on TOS throughout, I find it appropriate the Enterprise should be there in the end.

I don't understand how you come down so hard on Reyes. If Nogura had been commanding during the Shedai massacre, he would have given the order to glass the planet without any visible remorse and definitely wouldn't have leaked information. Reyes tried to convince his ex and her people to not turn down UFP support and she wouldn't listen. He then tried to warn others of the Shedai threat and was crucified for it by Starfleet. The burden of those deaths go to Starfleet command and Reyes' ex.

I feel Reyes and Desai did their share of suffering and I was happy they got an appropriate ending. I further appreciate this knowing that in the beginning of the creative process, there was no plan for Reyes to face court martial at all.
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Old June 14 2012, 05:09 PM   #221
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Re: Vanguard: Storming Heaven by David Mack Review Thread (Spoilers!)

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^Wow. I agree that the destruction of the Omari Ekon should have been covered better. It was such a major player in the series that I feel its destruction meritted a chapter of its own rather than a passing mention. But on the other 2 points, I couldn't disagree more.

If the Enterprise hadn't entered the fray, every one of the main characters would have been killed. I honestly wouldn't have believed them winning, nay, surviving, with the resources they had at the beginning of the battle. Besides, with the Enterprise being prominent in Book 1 and the series shedding light on TOS throughout, I find it appropriate the Enterprise should be there in the end.

I don't understand how you come down so hard on Reyes. If Nogura had been commanding during the Shedai massacre, he would have given the order to glass the planet without any visible remorse and definitely wouldn't have leaked information. Reyes tried to convince his ex and her people to not turn down UFP support and she wouldn't listen. He then tried to warn others of the Shedai threat and was crucified for it by Starfleet. The burden of those deaths go to Starfleet command and Reyes' ex.

I feel Reyes and Desai did their share of suffering and I was happy they got an appropriate ending. I further appreciate this knowing that in the beginning of the creative process, there was no plan for Reyes to face court martial at all.
I have no problem with the Enterprise showing up the first time, helping out with the Sagittarius mission. Spock also got his time with T'Prynn back on the station, bringing their story to a close.

It's having the Enterprise show up and save everyone that felt wrong. The whole "Gosh, if it weren't for the Enterprise we'd all be dead" moment. Having someone from outside the Vanguard series save everyone at the end just felt wrong to me. It's the final curtain. Let the stars of the show have the spotlight without the better known guest stars upstaging them.

Reyes let civilians go to a place that he was very sure would prove to lead to their deaths. The only one he seemed concerned about was his ex-wife. If he had told them that the situation was extraordinarily dangerous due to a poorly understood, hostile alien race and they went anyway then it would be on them. He didn't. He denied them the knowledge to make the choice for themselves and let them get slaughtered. And then he didn't face any sort of punishment for his actions. He got court martialed for revealing secrets. Letting him live on with the love of his life on a peaceful planet lets him escape the consequences. Actions, particularly ones that lead to hundreds of deaths, should have consequences and he totally dodged them.

Another thing I found interesting was that TOS was essentially set during wartime, albeit on a limited scale in the Taurus Reach. The revelation that Kirk was seeking out powerful allies to take on the Shedai was very interesting. Was Starfleet looking to use M-5 controlled ships to combat the Shedai? Did Starfleet have Bailey try to recruit Balok and the First Federation to join the battle? How many episodes can you tie back into the Shedai war, even indirectly?
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Old June 14 2012, 05:21 PM   #222
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Re: Vanguard: Storming Heaven by David Mack Review Thread (Spoilers!)

I don't think Kirk stole the show in the battle scene. Sure the Enterprise made it possible for them to survive but Khatami and the Deltan captain whose name currently escapes me (sorry) dominated that scene. We have them risking their lives through the entire battle; if not for them, there would have been nothing left when the Enterprise arrived.

As for Reyes, he didn't KNOW the colonists would be killed he only knew it was a dangerous situation. He had no way to know the situation would escalate to the point it did. Besides, what more could he do? he couldn't legally prevent the colonists from going there and he would have been immediately arrested if he told them why they shouldn't go. Even IF he told them the whole truth, his ex probably wouldn't have listened. it was only after the massacre that he realized that the Shedai were enough of a threat that the truth needed to be known.

I honestly can't see how Reyes could have handled the situation better, especially when most flag officers in his situation would have kept the Shedai a secret even after the massacre. I think he showed more courage and heart than others would have.

Besides, part of the series ending is some people got what they deserved and others didn't. Poor Zeke didn't get the ending he deserved. That's just reality.
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Old June 14 2012, 05:30 PM   #223
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Re: Vanguard: Storming Heaven by David Mack Review Thread (Spoilers!)

Well, saying "he may be bad but THOSE guys are worse" is hardly a sterling defence.

His wife was an esper. If he had told her the truth she would have known it, just like she knew he was holding something back. And he already knew the Shedai were a threat, otherwise why try to warn her off, however obliquely, in the first place?

The death of an innocent, as happened to Zeke, is a tragedy. Once done, there's nothing that can be done to correct it (time travel notwithstanding).

Allowing someone to get away with allowing the deaths of hundreds of civilians is a travesty. Unlike the situation with Fischer, Reyes is still around to face up for his crime. Letting him live happily ever after is rewarding criminal behavior.
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Old June 14 2012, 07:37 PM   #224
MatthiasRussell
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Re: Vanguard: Storming Heaven by David Mack Review Thread (Spoilers!)

I didn't say "he may be bad but those guys are worse", I'm saying he ISN'T bad. I'm saying he did the best he could given the situation he was in. Having a top secret clearance isn't something to be taken lightly. People in those positions don't get to go home and tell their wives what they did at work that day or warn people of a possible upcoming threat. Reyes swore an oath to Starfleet which included following the orders of his superiors. He couldn't divulge information because he was under orders not to like a good soldier.

I imagine many soldiers who read Vanguard would say Reyes is a bad guy for subsequently leaking information to the press and that he was a model soldier for keeping state secrets secret. He didn't face a court martial for letting innocents die, he faced the justice system for warning people about the truth. At his court martial, Reyes said that lives were more important than secrets which is why he decided to warn people.

Starfleet chose to lock him up for the rest of his life. They then lowered that sentence to house arrest on a planet in the ass end of space as a result of his help in stealing information from Ganz, which saved lives. I don't think Reyes got off too easy, nor do I think he did wrong by the colonists; he warned them the best he could under law.

Even if his vesper ex could tell if he was telling the truth if he told her the whole truth, would she have listened? She could tell that Reyes was worried and thought what they were doing was dangerous. Would it honestly have helped if she knew of the Shedai? She was going to go even with the real threat of the klingons who would have killed her if the Shedai didn't beat them to the punch.

In a similar vein, look at Jasmine Chodhury (whose name I just butchered). In Destiny, when she found out the Borg were heading for Deneva where her family was, she called her hushand to warn him to leave BUT she wouldn't tell him WHY was because the Borg were coming. He had the good sense to follow her direction even though his wife couldn't give him specifics.
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Old June 14 2012, 09:46 PM   #225
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Re: Vanguard: Storming Heaven by David Mack Review Thread (Spoilers!)

MatthiasRussell wrote: View Post
In a similar vein, look at Jasmine Chodhury (whose name I just butchered). In Destiny, when she found out the Borg were heading for Deneva where her family was, she called her hushand to warn him to leave BUT she wouldn't tell him WHY was because the Borg were coming. He had the good sense to follow her direction even though his wife couldn't give him specifics.
Actually, the character in Destiny who warned her husband to take the kids and run was Miranda Kadohata, and her family lived on Cestus III, which never came under direct attack by the Borg.

Jasminder Choudhury is the one who lost her entire family on Deneva. She, however, never broke protocol to warn them (not that she had to, since much of that sector was already in a state of emergency).
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