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

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Old August 7 2012, 06:03 PM   #1
JRoss
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Just read The Final Reflection

I have to say that I wasn't sure of what to make of it at first as I was reading. It was a bit difficult at first, what with my "Klingons as idiots with wrinkles" frame of reference. As I read, I really got an appreciation for the material. Yes, the storytelling can be opaque at times, but you have to remember that it is a novel being read by Kirk, and the information would make more sense to someone living in the 23rd century.

The structure was pretty ingenious. JMF mentions "the reflective game" early on, and I noticed that the ending and beginning of the story mirror one another.

I also really like the Cold War analogy. I just wish that the cover art would have depicted Krenn as having the forehead wrinkles, as he is depicted in the novel. Actually, I wish that he had no wrinkles in the novel.
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Old August 7 2012, 06:33 PM   #2
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Re: Just read The Final Reflection

...What I really appreciate is that the story is so short, about 250 pages, and still paints an epic picture jam-packed with in-jokes and RPG references and good dialogue and cool concepts and darn impressive characters. Economy in storytelling is a value unto itself.

Timo Saloniemi
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Old August 7 2012, 07:32 PM   #3
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Re: Just read The Final Reflection

the best star trek book ever.

also the conference transporter scene cracks me up every time
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Old August 8 2012, 08:09 AM   #4
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Re: Just read The Final Reflection

The best Trek novel thus far, bar none. There's a number that are in the running for the number two position but none are capable of catching The Final Reflection.

The Klingons come alive in a way that the TV series never managed to. Their culture is diverse and very different from what is usually portrayed in Trek and yet still true to the TOS version of the Klingons. Much more believable than the biker Klingons where almost everyone seems to be a warriors portrayal that we got.

If you want more background, see if you can find a copy of the FASA rpg Klingons supplement. It was written in parallel with TFR and gives even more insight into the best portrayal of an alien race ever in Trek lit.
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Old August 8 2012, 08:24 AM   #5
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Re: Just read The Final Reflection

I absolutely LOVED The Final Reflection, and I'm so happy that ebooks have allowed me the opportunity to read it when I had no chance before. And yes, the transporter scene had me laughing out loud. I was absolutely blown away by The Final Reflection. So much win.

The Final Reflection review.
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Old August 8 2012, 02:58 PM   #6
Therin of Andor
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Re: Just read The Final Reflection

Kertrats47 wrote: View Post
I'm so happy that ebooks have allowed me the opportunity to read it when I had no chance before.
Used copies on Amazon. MMPB for as little as one cent plus postage, and a hardcover version for 19 cents.

http://www.amazon.com/The-Final-Refl...+reflection%22
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Old August 8 2012, 03:16 PM   #7
Kertrats47
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Re: Just read The Final Reflection

Therin of Andor wrote: View Post
Kertrats47 wrote: View Post
I'm so happy that ebooks have allowed me the opportunity to read it when I had no chance before.
Used copies on Amazon. MMPB for as little as one cent plus postage, and a hardcover version for 19 cents.

http://www.amazon.com/The-Final-Refl...+reflection%22
True, but having them shipped to Korea is awkward, plus the fact that I don't want too much physical "stuff" to carry home with me when I return to Canada! I guess I shouldn't have said "no chance," but rather that ebooks make it a lot easier. I love being on the subway, finishing a book, and downloading a new one to start reading in seconds.
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Old August 8 2012, 03:53 PM   #8
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Re: Just read The Final Reflection

Kertrat, I agree with pretty much everything that you said in your review. One friendly observation is that you didn't really discuss the meat of the story or the specific good points of the writing besides the fact that you like the portrayal of the Klingons.
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Old August 8 2012, 04:10 PM   #9
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Re: Just read The Final Reflection

JRoss wrote: View Post
One friendly observation is that you didn't really discuss the meat of the story or the specific good points of the writing besides the fact that you like the portrayal of the Klingons.
Yeah, this was one of my earlier reviews. I went back and forth on how much to talk about the actual story (spoilers and whatnot). I still go back and forth on that issue! I'd like to think my writing has gotten better, too. I really don't know, though. Thanks for the comments!
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Old August 8 2012, 04:31 PM   #10
Therin of Andor
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Re: Just read The Final Reflection

Kertrats47 wrote: View Post
I guess I shouldn't have said "no chance," but rather that ebooks make it a lot easier. I love being on the subway, finishing a book, and downloading a new one to start reading in seconds.
We should note that "The Final Reflection" was also reissued as recently as 2004, in "The Hand of Kahless", a trade-sized Signature Edition, which included "TNG: Kahless" by Michael Jan Friedman, and a new introduction by Terry J Erdmann, re the evolution of Klingons over the generations, with quotes from Marc Okrand (linguist, writer of "The Klingon Dictionary") and Dan Curry (TNG visual effects).

It's also an eBook:
http://www.amazon.com/The-Star-Trek-...and+of+kahless


The Hand of Kahless by Therin of Andor, on Flickr
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Old August 8 2012, 04:45 PM   #11
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Re: Just read The Final Reflection

My old exceedingly well read copy is now beginning to fall to pieces, but I managed to track down a Starfleet Library copy in perfect nick.
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Old August 8 2012, 06:15 PM   #12
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Re: Just read The Final Reflection

I thought TFR was excellent. And I really like that, depite subsequent canon rendering so much of the novel irreconcilable with the current Trek universe, that references to it still crop up all over the place. And that the Kinshaya are a part of the Typhon Pact (even if they're described to be nothing like the ones pictured in Ford's FASA Klingon manual)
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Old August 8 2012, 06:24 PM   #13
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Re: Just read The Final Reflection

Slightly OT, but Ford's alternate-history fantasy novel, The Dragon Waiting, is also worth tracking down. As I recall, it won the World Fantasy Award way back when.
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Old August 9 2012, 11:03 AM   #14
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Re: Just read The Final Reflection

depite subsequent canon rendering so much of the novel irreconcilable with the current Trek universe
With a book this good, one is motivated to make the effort to reconcile anyway.

What is contradictory there? Due to ENT, transporters appear earlier on, and so does dilithium - but as with cloaks, we could plead "rat race" and argue that the things introduced in the novel were new iterations with superior qualities. Say, naturally mined dilithium might be a galaxy-shaking development, as opposed to the never-seen, never-described substance of ENT, if we assumed the latter was an industrial product with an annual global yield of micrograms...

Klingon ideas on when first contact happened are already indicated to be different from (what the Klingons know of) human ideas - both could be written down as creative rewriting of history, something the Klingons are quite famous of in both interpretations.

The canon and novel descriptions of the Klingon culture and biology don't appear to overlap sufficiently to create contradictions. We never saw the lack of Games, Thought Admirals, orphanages, Name changes or Fusions in canon Trek! Nor was there in this novel an explicit lack of those Klingon features introduced in TNG or DS9 or VOY. Or was there?

As for the relative ages of Spock and this young Leonard McCoy we never see... Perhaps the good Doctor had a cousin who was a namesake?

Timo Saloniemi
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Old August 9 2012, 02:14 PM   #15
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Re: Just read The Final Reflection

Timo wrote: View Post
The canon and novel descriptions of the Klingon culture and biology don't appear to overlap sufficiently to create contradictions.
How about the age discrepancies? In the novel, Klingons have a very limited lifespan. While that would work well with Alexander's quick maturation, it's contradicted by Kang, Kor, and Koloth's appearances in the 24th century.

Timo wrote: View Post
Nor was there in this novel an explicit lack of those Klingon features introduced in TNG or DS9 or VOY. Or was there?
I could (facetiously) argue the lack of bloodwine.
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