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

View Poll Results: Rate Silent Weapons.
Outstanding 37 44.05%
Above Average 33 39.29%
Average 11 13.10%
Below Average 2 2.38%
Poor 1 1.19%
Voters: 84. You may not vote on this poll

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Old December 4 2012, 09:47 PM   #106
wizkid
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Re: TNG: Silent Weapons by David Mack Review Thread (Spoilers!)

Thanks man! You cleared up all that. Just making sure I wasn't lost.
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Old December 4 2012, 09:54 PM   #107
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Re: TNG: Silent Weapons by David Mack Review Thread (Spoilers!)

Eat-Da-Tribble wrote: View Post
I don't believe Geordi becomes first officer. A first officer must stay on the bridge. If Geordi is promoted, who will be responsible for engineering? Nor do I see Data as first officer. He is condemned to be second officer until the big crunch.
Taurik, of course, would become the next chief engineer. He is a long-standing secondary character and already has a potential love-interest, i.e. social character building.

Data would either be promoted for his heroic sacrifice in '79, decades of duty as Lt. Commander, or by simply taking a single test that earned Troi promotion.

wizkid wrote: View Post
A few questions about content
Doctor Harstad - What book was she introduced in?

Known close parallel universe - What book can I find out more about this universe?

Fellowship of Artificial Intelligence - I assume these are the people that tried to recruit Noonian in Book One. Have they been mentioned in prior books?
Thanks!

A few answers
IIRC, Doctor Tamala Harstad was introduced as chick for Geordi in Destiny: Gods of Night. No wait, back then he flirted with Mikaela Leishman from the Aventine... Maybe it was A Singular Destiny. Sorry, I'm confused.
Hey, avid TrekLit readers, why hasn't anyone of you written a Memory Beta article about Harstad yet?

The known parallel universe is... the Mirror Universe. The latest book in the MU series, Rise Like Lions, features jaunt drive starships extensively.

The Fellowship of Artificial Intelligences was first hinted at in Immortal Coil and appeared first in The Persistence of Memory.
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Old December 4 2012, 10:19 PM   #108
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Re: TNG: Silent Weapons by David Mack Review Thread (Spoilers!)

How far from Earth is the Breen Homeworld? Their entire evil plot read like they were just receiving the TV signals from Earth and catching up on the show 24. Talk about a rube goldbergian plot! They went through about 15 different evil sub-plans (each of which would have been more effective than their actual endgame plan) in order to try and steal a crashed ship from a planet that no one knew was there?

Along the way, they frame (but don't bother to eliminate) Data, almost kill the Gorn monarch and the Fed President, kill and replace several other people, leave clues to string along the Enterprise, etc. Wouldn't any of those plans by themselves have been better? At the very least, follow through and finish it, and you're better off.

And in the process, burned an android avatar spy program that they spent a ton on, and years of effort.

All in the effort to get better propulsion tech. Since they were able to infiltrate anywhere they liked and replace people, wouldn't it have been easier to just have one of them replace a Starfleet officer and just steal the Quantum Slipstream blueprints? Nice and easy, doesn't even reveal your android program. Or hell, could have just borrowed some Romulan tech and cloaked the damned crashed ship, towed it home for later. Either of those plans gets the same result (or better, successful) with far less effort and risk.

To make it worse, spent half the book breaking the fourth wall by having the characters tell us how stupid this plan was! Was at least expecting the reveal to be bigger, and those characters to be wrong, but they pretty much nailed it. Disappointing, in that my mind built this up like the Breen had a clue what they were doing. Not so much...

Didn't hate the book, just felt like a letdown after all the buildup, and not nearly as much fun as the first one.
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Old December 4 2012, 11:47 PM   #109
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Re: TNG: Silent Weapons by David Mack Review Thread (Spoilers!)

^ I think if the Breen got any collateral results from their subterfuge activities they would have been happy with those as well. That wormhole ship was like the pearl of great value that they were willing to do anything to get it. Sure the androids were a great resource to have but the Breen leader thought the engines were a greater tactical advantage. And for all we know, they still have some of the androids left.

As to everyone saying how stupid the plan was, many Breen agreed, which is why there was a change in leadership. However, had his plan succeeded, he would have been highly regarded by his people. Fortune favors the bold but sometimes the bold die or come back empty handed.
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Old December 5 2012, 04:40 AM   #110
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Re: TNG: Silent Weapons by David Mack Review Thread (Spoilers!)

But 95% of the stuff they did wasn't really helpful towards that goal. And most of it would have been a better PRIMARY plan than what they had. Just committing to it instead of using it as a distraction, and they missed several good opportunities AND burned the android program, which was a bigger chip than the wormhole drive system.

Again, they could have just used the androids to easily steal the slipstream blueprints. Then they have propulsion specs AND the android spies. And skip about 15 other steps.

It's not a bold plan, it's a convoluted one with too many moving parts. Most of which don't make sense, alone or as part of a larger whole. The 'stupid' parts of the plan only make sense if they're intentionally stupid while leading to something. Turned out they were all just distraction, but there's a million ways to do that better, for far less cost. And as distracting as almost killing the president is, i'd imagine actually doing it would be more distracting, no? And just taking the ship out in a cloaked vessel would work without ANY of this stuff.

Just like in 24, the plan's too complicated to succeed. And most of the "that was just a distraction while the real plan was X. No, that was just a distraction, while the real plan was X" nonsense got out of control. ANY link in the chain fails,and it all falls apart. Then they burned the android program for NOTHING, and never opened up a travel lane to try and bring the wormhole ship home.

It was just disappointing because after every character pointing out how dumb the plan was, I was expecting a big reveal that showed a master plan that made sense of all the wasted subplots. Instead, they were RIGHT, it really was just a dumb plan.
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Old December 5 2012, 12:46 PM   #111
Deranged Nasat
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Re: TNG: Silent Weapons by David Mack Review Thread (Spoilers!)

I don't disagree with you, Scout101, when it comes to the plan being foolish due to too many moving parts and the sheer amount of waste it involves - in terms of resources, opportunities, etc. However, given that the Breen characters themselves were constantly pointing out the illogic of the scheme and the benefits of alternative plans, I think the novel was intended to demonstrate the problematic politics of the Breen; the failures in their chosen mode of operation, their governmental system and its abuses. In that regard, I suppose I see it as a continuation of Zero Sum Game, an argument for how screwed up the Breen system is compared to what they have potential to be. I think the real point of the story isn't about the plot itself but about the perils of powerful leaders having free reign to indulge their whims. Just as so many real nations have had their potential - for good or ill - wasted because their system lets obsessive and ill-sighted people settle into positions of unquestioned influence.

It wouldn't be the first time a leader gets it into their head that a convoluted scheme wasting money, lives and resources is justified because they've decided it is, and commits to a course of action that drags whole nations down when they had every opportunity to rise. If anything, I think the novel does a good job of showing how bad things are in the Confederacy, when a leader can squander opportunities for success the way Brex did. As you say, many of the sub-plans were intelligent operations that would bring achievable results, even spectacular victories, but because Brex and Tran were focused unduly on the great wormhole prize, they threw it all away. They insisted they were aiming to make the Breen Confederacy the leading nation of known space, but in fact they were pi**ing away every advantage and resource their people had in pursuit of a wild gamble. And the lower-ranking Breen can't do anything but go along with it, because whenever they raise objections or try to speak sense, they're told "You are not privy to the leader's great vision, stop second-guessing and perform your appointed tasks".

Although there is a slight silver lining, I guess, in that the Domo isn't an absolute dictator and can be removed by the Confederate Congress if they've had enough of him - as of course they have by novel's end.

I guess what I'm saying is that I read the Breen parts of the book not as "The Breen pursue galactic dominance" but as "The Breen could have achieved their victory were their leaders not ruining it all by over-reaching and failing to use what they had effectively''
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Old December 5 2012, 02:14 PM   #112
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Re: TNG: Silent Weapons by David Mack Review Thread (Spoilers!)

rahullak wrote: View Post
Tantalizing isn't it? Are we going to see Treklit go the Countdown way? Or not? Or something in-between?
The Persistence of Memory has already contradicted Countdown's version of how and when Data was brought back.
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Old December 5 2012, 02:51 PM   #113
rahullak
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Re: TNG: Silent Weapons by David Mack Review Thread (Spoilers!)

Christopher wrote: View Post
rahullak wrote: View Post
Tantalizing isn't it? Are we going to see Treklit go the Countdown way? Or not? Or something in-between?
The Persistence of Memory has already contradicted Countdown's version of how and when Data was brought back.
Oh...

But Data was brought back. He could become Captain of the Enterprise, if it were to be so ordained by TPTB. And Picard could become the UFP Ambassador to Vulcan. Just saying that there's been some more groundwork laid that could possibly lead to a status quo similar but not exact to Countdown.

Last edited by rahullak; December 6 2012 at 12:02 AM. Reason: Grammar
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Old December 5 2012, 03:09 PM   #114
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Re: TNG: Silent Weapons by David Mack Review Thread (Spoilers!)

Very good book. Not quite as good as the first part though.

Negatives:

-Picard/Crusher scene was just odd. The Jack callback was good, but Crusher shouldn't need to know that Picard has changed, she's been there while he changed.
-Geordi girlfriend #3453894934e9 needs fleshing out(and yes, I do realise she's been in previous books)

Positives:

-Pretty much the rest of the book. Special shout out to using up intelligence assets to create a path to ferry the special sauce ship.

I look forward to Data's big confrontation with the super adventure club in book three
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Old December 5 2012, 03:27 PM   #115
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Re: TNG: Silent Weapons by David Mack Review Thread (Spoilers!)

I pretty much agree with Scout101. The plan seemed incredibly convoluted. What I don't understand is why the Breen didn't merely make detailed scans of the ships engines and then destroy it? The Tzenkethi were already shown to have the ability to create short, stable wormholes. Adding what the Breen learned from the downed ship would've only made that program even more successful.

It just seems that the only reason the Federation is still standing is because the Typhon Pact doesn't have a coherent foreign policy and military strategy.
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Old December 5 2012, 03:48 PM   #116
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Re: TNG: Silent Weapons by David Mack Review Thread (Spoilers!)

Thats because none of them trust each other

It's just like the EU
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Old December 5 2012, 06:29 PM   #117
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Re: TNG: Silent Weapons by David Mack Review Thread (Spoilers!)

zarkon wrote: View Post
Thats because none of them trust each other

It's just like the EU
But I think these books that focus on the Typhon Pact have started to fall into a trap. We all know that together they are at least equal to the might of the Federation. So the books are starting to revolve around separate Pact members doing things that are to the detriment of the other Pact members.

You can only tell so many stories under those conditions before it gets tiresome. The dramatic potential of Pact members doing things behind each others backs is played out.
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Old December 5 2012, 06:48 PM   #118
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Re: TNG: Silent Weapons by David Mack Review Thread (Spoilers!)

Oh, I agree

Maybe thats why the next miniseries is called "The Fall".
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Old December 5 2012, 06:50 PM   #119
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Re: TNG: Silent Weapons by David Mack Review Thread (Spoilers!)

zarkon wrote: View Post
Oh, I agree

Maybe thats why the next miniseries is called "The Fall".
But does anyone care if the Typhon Pact does fall? It's only an alliance in the loosest sense of the word and I have zero emotional investment in it.
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Old December 5 2012, 06:54 PM   #120
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Re: TNG: Silent Weapons by David Mack Review Thread (Spoilers!)

That's kinda the point I think. I've never felt paticularly invested in the conflict between the two groups myself, maybe the editor decided it's time to stick a fork in the idea and move on

Gorn don't seem happy, Breen are under new management....the seeds are there if that's the direction they're going.
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