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View Poll Results: Grade "Star Trek: Destiny: Gods of Night"
Excellent 105 68.63%
Above Average 36 23.53%
Average 8 5.23%
Below Average 2 1.31%
Poor 2 1.31%
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Old October 3 2008, 09:52 PM   #121
Baerbel Haddrell
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Re: Star Trek: Destiny: Gods of Night - SPOILER Thread

I have just tried to post my review of Destiny: Gods of Night and was told that the text is too long. Therefore I am splitting it now in two:

PART ONE

After the big build-up towards the Destiny trilogy and especially after having read some excerpts before getting the first book I could see myself that Destiny will be one of the biggest events in Star Trek literature. Yes, it is about the Borg but already the first book offers so much more. What we first of all see in “Gods of Night” is a rich tapestry of character development. Some of them are influenced by the Borg threat, some aren`t.

This book is dealing with a lot of characters but when reading it, I never felt overwhelmed. I am admittedly a regular Star Trek book reader and familiar with most of these people and their back stories. Nevertheless, I think also people who aren`t shouldn`t have trouble to follow what is going on and I found the Appendix helpful, too. David Mack did an excellent job when introducing these people in this book, providing the foundation and then build on that.

There are four main storylines in this book:

AVENTINE (Captain Ezri Dax)

I admit it, when I first learned that this book will feature a captain Ezri Dax, I was very sceptical. As much as I like her, I still had the Ezri from the DS9 TV series in my mind and that Ezri Dax was not suitable for being a captain. On the other hand, when I thought about it more thoroughly, I definitely noticed a change in Star Trek literature. One of my frustrations was that with the exception of “Abyss”, authors and editors had the unfortunate habit to show that when Ezri and Bashir were a couple, they tended to turn immature and annoying, losing a significant portion of their professionalism. I still love “Abyss” and had high hopes that this relationship will build on that but later I gave up and thought, if they are determined to show a bickering, childish couple, better to get it over and done with and separate them.

I think Ezri Dax blossomed after the separation and I am glad that she is now allowed in the Star Trek books to find her full potential. I liked Captain Ezri Dax very much in this book and am looking forward to read much more. But I am also curious now what will happen in DS9 Relaunch, how Ezri will develop in that series.

What also makes me happy is that Simon Tarses is now chief medical officer on her ship. I still remember “The Drumhead” very well and Picard`s prediction that his career has ended. I was glad when I first met him in DS9 Relaunch again but this goes much further than I hoped for. I also liked the other characters but although some of these other names sound familiar, I can`t place them right now in my memory.

I have no problems with it that Ezri Dax advanced in rank so quickly and the circumstances of it. Ezri Dax is not only highly qualified because she is a joined Trill but also because she proved herself in battle and in this war so many qualified captains (and, of course, so many other people) were already killed.

I think David Mack captured the spooky atmosphere of the mysterious wreck of the Columbia very well. I kept wondering with Dax and her crew what happened here. It was interesting to discover the answers step by step. I had the right suspicions after I read about the mutiny and that one of the Caeliar was on the ship. What the poor alien went through is dreadful and I very much felt for him. For a species to whom life is so sacred, I am sure it was little consolation for him that he was not responsible for his actions when he killed and fed on three of Ezri Dax officers. Then he died so close to finding out about the recovery of his species. Very sad indeed.


TITAN (Captain William Riker)

We have seen that even so very different species like Vulkans and humans or Bajorans and Cardassians can have children with each other without or with little help. That Deanna as a half Betazoid and half human has so serious problems having a child with her human husband surprised me. I wondered if Deanna would have this problem also if the combination would be different, including with a Betazoid male. On the other hand, counsellor Haaj mentioned her husband`s “genetic shortcomings”. But then I learned what the cause for her problems really is, that it is rooted in the TNG episode “The Child”. The explanations make a lot of sense to me, so much that I wondered why I didn`t think of this before.

At a time when medical science is so much more advanced than today in real life, maybe it is good to see that the miracle of life is still partly a mystery and that there is still a lot to discover and learn. I feel very much for Deanna and Riker but I think it is important to show sometimes that there are limits to medical science and that doctors are not gods.

I do like Dr. Ree but his treatment and attitude towards Deanna leaves a lot to be desired. I had to remember what Dax told Bashir in an episode, it is arrogant to believe that because he can`t find a cure that there isn`t any.

This story touched me more than any other in this book because it feels so personal to me. My husband and me had to wait nearly 10 years for our daughter. She was born a year after a miscarriage and I know from experience that pregnancy and birth can be dangerous. It just made this experience and our child more precious, also because I have been told that me getting pregnant again is not impossible but very unlikely.

It wasn`t spelled out that clearly in the book and I also think that wouldn`t have been necessary or even desirable but the debate between the “pro life” position and “pro choice” one was very visible. David Mack walked a very fine and sensitive line. It was mentioned quite a few times that Deanna`s baby is not viable, that the little girl definitely won`t survive and that this doomed baby is endangering her mother`s life. I can understand that (if I am correct) this is as far as Star Trek literature is probably willing to go but I wonder if things would be different if this baby has a chance to survive but with severe disabilities. I can understand both sides of the fence, the choice Deanna made and Riker`s position. It is one of the most difficult choices any couple could face but first of all it must be the choice of the pregnant woman who is carrying the baby and who has to face the risks of pregnancy and birth.

I am very much pro-choice. Long before I had my daughter my husband and me discussed what we would have done if we had found out that our child is severely disabled. Especially if the mind is affected, I would have aborted it. We both agreed on that. Our daughter was born with a hip defect that took nearly a year to fix but now she is a healthy, bright little girl.

As much as I understand Deanna`s instinctive reaction to keep her baby and how difficult it must be to deal with her emotions, I felt very uncomfortable with it that she resented her husband for feeling otherwise. What counts is that he supported her decision because at the end it must be hers. This brings me to the incredible statement Dr. Ree made, that he has the right to force Deanna to have the fetus removed, in other words, to have an abortion. I was shocked. It is now finally against the law to order a Vulcan to force having a mind meld with someone else, something that was long over due. Forcing a woman to have an abortion, that is so wrong on so many levels and this is not something that I would have expected to find in Star Trek that is supposedly about a humanity that is more advanced and better than in real life. I also wonder, on a more general level, I thought also people in Starfleet as in real life have the right to refuse treatment.

I am sure, if Dr. Ree would really have insisted, Deanna would have resigned and I definitely could not have blamed her. It wouldn`t surprise me if Riker would have done the same. I am surprised that the choice between following such an order and resigning was never mentioned in this book unless I overlooked it. And what would forcing mean: Physically dragging Deanna on the operating table or stun her before doing it? I doubt it.

I am also appalled that he suggested a hysterectomy to Deanna. Yes, her ovaries, her genetic code is severely damaged. But her womb is perfectly fine. Even if she will never be able to use her own eggs, there are other possibilities even today in the real life world to get pregnant. Taking that away from Deanna would be a worse crime than forcing an abortion on her.

From early on I wondered if Dr. Ree is actually unable to understand what this unborn baby means to Deanna and Riker because his species is so different. Maybe Dr. Ree should talk to the counsellors on board so that they can explain the situation to him. From what I have seen about dinosaurs and reptilians, many of them lay eggs, bury them in the sand and walk away from them. That is very different from carrying a growing and moving baby inside you for nine months, give birth and look after a completely helpless infant afterwards that needs you to survive. I am no biologist but I can imagine that laying eggs is much less dangerous to a female than giving birth to living babies. From what Dr. Ree thought later in the book, I could see that I was right.

I was very impressed and very moved how David Mack dealt with this sensitive story, how he looked at it from different perspectives and described the thoughts and feelings of everyone involved. That included colleagues and friends. I think it was a good choice to show very clearly that Riker and Picard are different people who also approach command differently. Vale showed that she is an excellent first officer who understands people, an important skill for a high ranking officer but who also showed that she is a good friend. I liked the scene in which he finally told her about what happened and she supported him very much. Unfortunately that changed later. I also think it would be wrong to remove Deanna from duty completely. She has skills that are very valuable and keeping her busy and challenged will help her and benefit the ship. I also think it was unfair to assume that Riker gave Deanna special treatment. I am sure, if any other female officer would be in the same or similar position, Riker would have defended her right to choose as well.

Bv the way, I enjoyed the refreshing honesty of the Tellarite counsellor, Pral glash Haaj, very much. His approach takes some getting used to but it is very effective. I like him a lot.

As much as I understand that Riker and Deanna need to get their feelings sorted out, I think what happened between Riker and Vale should be a warning to Riker: The longer this goes on, the more it will poison not only the marriage but also affect his relationship with the crew. In other words, it is all right to fall down in a crisis but you have to get up and deal with it as quickly as possible because the longer it takes, the more difficult it will be.

I am hoping very much that Riker and Deanna will both be able to do that, to master this crisis. I know from experience that a serious crisis can either break up a marriage or – as it was in our case – make the bond between the couple even stronger. I don`t know at this point what authors and editors have in mind but there are several options. The most obvious one is considering adoption but there are others that are less obvious I don`t want to spell out here because they would be seen as giving story ideas to professional writers. I even see some theoretical possibilities for a happy end but my gut feeling tells me not to count on that.

I wonder what will happen now that Vale, Deanna and the rest of the very colourful mix of the away team have reached New Erigol, the rebuilt home of the Caeliar. The Caeliar were burned by an unknown more advanced species as well as desperate humans who couldn`t understand what they were meddling with and what consequences it could have. I wonder how such a powerful but extremely non-violent species will deal with the Borg threat. My guess is that they might have an idea how to deal with Deanna and her baby. It could very well be something also Dr. Ree was not even able to imagine.

It was a nice touch that Tuvok immediately recognized the human woman who welcomed the team together with two Caeliar. I must admit, when I first heard of the idea to place Captain Hernandez from the time frame of the series Enterprise into the present day Star Trek, I was not happy about it. I kept joking, after nearly all members of the TOS Enterprise ended up one way or the other in modern Star Trek, when will the same trend start with the people from the series Enterprise? Captain Hernandez ship is not Archer`s Enterprise but nevertheless.

I am torn now. I still don`t like the general idea but I must admit, the story is excellent and doesn`t feel forced to me at all. All right, if it will really stop here it might even add an interesting element to present day Star Trek.

I want to mention another character story, the one dealing with Melora. I found the descriptions of what Ra-Havreii designed for her very interesting indeed and could understand Melora very well who feels so comfortable in this environment. But I am worried what this will do to her, emotionally and physically, if she keeps herself locked away in her own comfortable world for too long and only interacts most of the time with holographic avatars. I don`t think this is healthy.
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Old October 3 2008, 09:54 PM   #122
Baerbel Haddrell
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Re: Star Trek: Destiny: Gods of Night - SPOILER Thread

This is PART TWO:

ENTERPRISE (Captain Jean-Luc Picard)

As I said on previous occasions, I am very happy that Picard and Beverly finally got married and started a family. I smiled when I read about how Picard kept watching his unborn son because I felt the same when I saw my unborn child for the first time. That Picard kept bracing himself against the feeling of loss after what he already experienced in life is understandable but I keep hoping that this time there will be a happy end in his private life.

But from what I can see Picard has to battle with a different kind of crisis than Riker. Like his wife, I am worried about him and can understand the immense pressure he is under very well. The war against the Borg is a dreadful burden to any Starfleet officer, especially the ones who have to make the difficult decisions. On top of that there is another element that was already explored in the Myriad Universes story “A Gutted World”. Picard can be a warrior if he has to be but he is a scientist, an explorer at heart. I could understand very well that fighting this bloody war and taking lives is becoming more and more difficult for him. Each battle and each loss destroys him a bit more. Of course there is also Picard`s history with the Borg, his still existing link with their collective minds and serious lack of sleep. There is only so much even the strongest person can take and I wonder when will Picard reach his breaking point?

I am sure, without Beverly`s support as his wife and friend, the situation would have been much more difficult for him and I liked the scene in which she slapped him and brought him back to his senses very much. Yes, it looks very bad but giving up is not an option that is acceptable. As I said before, falling down in a crisis can happen but you have to get up and face it afterwards. That Picard is torn between extremes right now is understandable and I can only hope that he will be strong enough.


COLUMBIA (Captain Erika Hernandez)

I haven`t read the latest Enterprise novel yet and am not familiar with any name of her crew. I don`t find this crew as distinctive and as interesting as the other ones in this book but that doesn`t mean that I didn`t feel very much with them and their fate.

There is just a minor thing here that irritated me. It is very minor compared to the rest of this excellent book but I want to mention it. What is it about Germans (Is that man Austrian or German?) in American literature or movies sometimes? All right, it was not as bad as the dreadful broken, misused and misspelled German Marvel inserted years ago into the X-Men when Nightcrawler appeared but I have never met any German who speaks English and sprinkles German words into his or her English as found also in this book. I certainly don`t. Something else: Be careful with literal translations. “Scheisskopf” is not a swear word that exists in the German language. I had to laugh when I read that because I remember that my husband wanted to be clever and used this word when driving after I had told him off for swearing at the wheel when our daughter is sitting on the back seat.

As with the other captains in “Gods of Night”, also Captain Hernandez showed that she is a highly qualified officer who had to deal with a terrible situation. When reading this part of the book I always had that image in my mind of the abandoned, broken ship on a desolate world.

Also in this case, David Mack captured the desperate mood on board and the torn feelings among the crew very well during their long journey until they met the Caeliar. They are very interesting beings, higher evolved than humans, isolationists and against taking lives under any circumstances. On the other hand they are looking for civilizations further developed than they are. I wondered from early on how realistic this attitude is because maturity and wisdom are not necessarily combined with a higher level of development. For example, when looking at the Q, maturity and level of development are two very different matters.

As I learned later, that includes the question of peaceful intent. I knew that something bad must have happened but I had no idea. Well, I know now a lot of what happened to the Columbia and its people on board but I have the feeling, there is more to learn.


OTHERS

I think David Mack dealt very well with the fact that when writing about a war, especially a war on the scale as in Destiny, it is important to also show sometimes how other people than the main characters are affected and the difficult choices they have to face.

I found the part of the book when the Ranger sacrificed itself in a suicide attack, destroying the Borg vessel and saving the Klingon world Khitomer extremely moving. It was an interesting choice that it was an Andorian who was unable to execute the order for the suicide mission. I couldn`t blame him. I am not sure I would be able to do it. I think nobody knows until he is actually placed in a life or death situation, especially in one that looks like a hopeless sacrifice that is expected of you. I am very curious how this noble sacrifice that saved so many Klingons will affect the relationship with the Federation in future. I liked the appearance of Martok and I want to use this opportunity to ask the people at Pocket Books again, please continue KRAD`s Klingon series! I want to read more.

Admiral Paris death was unexpected and moved me a lot, too. I will miss him. I liked the scene when his son, Tom Paris, got his message and learned soon after that he will never be able to speak with his father again. I regretted it that Tom and B`Elanna separated. It seems what I could read in Christie Golden`s novels was the beginning of the end of their relationship. I don`t think their relationship was ever very stable so that I am not surprised that it didn`t survive the difficulties coming with their return from the Delta Quadrant. But I would have hoped that B`Elanna would at least allow the father of her daughter to have some access to their child.

It was great to read that Calhoun and his Excalibur managed to destroy a Borg ship! This adds another teaser to the already long list of what I would like to see explored in the New Frontier series. I learned that “Treason” won`t have any connections with Destiny but I am hoping that Peter David will deal with this topic in a future book.

I also welcomed it to meet some of the characters from “Articles of the Federation”, first of all Federation President Nanietta Bacco. Appointing Seven as her new deputy security advisor is not unexpected but interesting. I am curious how this part of the trilogy will develop in future.

Hopefully it won`t be long until I will be able to read the next Destiny book!
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Old October 3 2008, 11:57 PM   #123
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Re: Star Trek: Destiny: Gods of Night - SPOILER Thread

Baerbel,

Thank you for your detailed and well-considered comments. You raised many interesting questions and well-founded criticisms, and you offered a number of on-target speculations.

I think that as you read the next two books in the trilogy, you will be pleased to see that many of your questions and concerns are addressed.

I look forward to your commentaries on Mere Mortals and Lost Souls.

Best,
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Old October 4 2008, 01:46 PM   #124
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Re: Star Trek: Destiny: Gods of Night - SPOILER Thread

I got the book yesterday afternoon and finished it a few hours later. I'll be honest, I had temporarily thought about making a mock review panning various aspects which had little to do with the actual plot; but seeing how David Mack has spent a lot of time writing his trilogy, decided my sarcasm and sense of humor would not go over well with the author.

It was a short read, took only couple of hours to finish, but it was enjoyable. I was able to figure out some of the events in the book due to the foreshadowing in earlier chapters, but overall I had some nice surprises.

One plot aspect I liked was the Riker vs Vale arguments about Riker's concern over his wife; something that Vale has used in one of her earlier arguments on why she did not want to become the first officer aboard the ship. In a sense it shows that oft times individuals will make decisions based on relationships, rather other factors. In my opinion the decision to send the Doctor Ree down the planet in order to follow the letter of the law regarding Troi's work restrictions sets a potentially dangerous precedent.

You've taken the CMO away from the ship; which potentially could create even larger problems. Yes, I reliaze that other doctors are on the ship, but in this climate of war, you'd probably want your medical personnel readily available. Since directly beaming him back from the planet seems unlikely I see it as a dangerous risk. Of course this just my opinion.

In regards to the MACO's mutiny, I have no major problems with it occuring since it appears that Enterprise at many times extreme tension existed between the two group. I know in real life that personnel in "special forces" type units can be extremely arrogant; oft times because of their specialized knowledge and skills. What I found a bit unusual is that they engaged in a mutiny, and when Hernandez orders their arrest, they surrender without resisting. I find it odd because they've already crossed the Rubicon as the saying goes. If their military discipline allowed them surrender without resistance, then if should have also prevented them engaging in their activities on the planet. After all, they knew they were violating orders initially, I don't see some epiphany occuring once their back on the ship.

I was touched by the scenes of Admiral Paris trying to get his message sent out amidst the last minutes of his starbase and the reaction by Tom upon reading the message. I'm sure its something many individuals wish they could do as they face imminent death, but are unable to do so.

Surely some arguments will be made about the limited focus on the ship to ship battles with the Borg or the starbase/ground base battles as well. However, I think its a nice mix.

Overall I think this was an extremely well written book and can't wait to read the next two books.
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Old October 4 2008, 01:56 PM   #125
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Re: Star Trek: Destiny: Gods of Night - SPOILER Thread

wew wrote: View Post
What I found a bit unusual is that they engaged in a mutiny, and when Hernandez orders their arrest, they surrender without resisting. I find it odd because they've already crossed the Rubicon as the saying goes. If their military discipline allowed them surrender without resistance, then if should have also prevented them engaging in their activities on the planet. After all, they knew they were violating orders initially, I don't see some epiphany occuring once their back on the ship.
The reason for their surrender was, I thought, fairly explicit.

When Foyle had beamed back aboard Columbia, he let it be known that Hernandez and her first officer were dead. He wasn't in charge of the Columbia, that had fallen to El-Rashad, and El-Rashad was not subject directly to Foyle's orders.

Then when Hernandez contacted the Columbia, Foyle's lie was exposed, and when Hernandez began explaining that Foyle's plan was 1) madness and 2) had severe consequences, any trust El-Rashad had in the Major was blown.

So, short of commandeering the ship on his own, Foyle had lost. And he couldn't take the bridge by force; he had only himself and Yacavino against the remaining crew of the Columbia. At that point, giving up was his only option. Foyle, not being a stupid man, allowed himself to be taken.
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Old October 4 2008, 02:29 PM   #126
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Re: Star Trek: Destiny: Gods of Night - SPOILER Thread

Allyn Gibson wrote: View Post
So, short of commandeering the ship on his own, Foyle had lost. And he couldn't take the bridge by force; he had only himself and Yacavino against the remaining crew of the Columbia. At that point, giving up was his only option. Foyle, not being a stupid man, allowed himself to be taken.


I was kind of expecting him to pretend to surrender peacefully, throw the guards off their guard, so to speak, then overpower them in the corridor going to the brig and try and take over engineering before the conduit opened...or maybe that's just how I would do it.


Allyn Gibson wrote: View Post
SciFiChick wrote: View Post
The Troi subplot had me riled up a bit.
Ree's diagnosis of the underlying genetic problems is fine. However, there's not reason why the problems should be insurmountable in creating a viable ovum. And I'm calling bullshit on his final diagnosis.

First, okay, Troi has mitochondrial DNA damage. Are there no other Betazoids aboard the Titan that a mitochondria could be borrowed from? Or does the Titan's shipboard computer not have a sequencing of Betazoid mitochondrial DNA? Given that mitochondrial DNA is the most stable across populations, using another Betazoid's mitochondria (or rebuilding it from an established baseline, since Ree says that he can, in fact, rebuild DNA) should be feasible.

Second, the corruption of Deanna's ova DNA. Ree says that he can't rebuild that, because he doesn't know what to rebuild it to. The problem is that Deanna has a fuckload of cells in her body with the standard template. (Use the DNA out of the intestine, like "Up the Long Ladder.") I find it impossible to believe that by the 24th-century Federation medical science can't take a cell and induce meiosis upon its genetic material.

So, I'm forced to draw one or two conclusions. Either it's the Voyager problem -- technobabble for technobabble's sake to confuse the issue with nonsense -- or Dr. Ree is simply unwilling to help Deanna Troi. Given the conversation Ree and Vale have later, the latter is entirely possible, but I can't dismiss the former.

Clearly, her DNA is for the most part okay - otherwise she'd be dead or have massive cancer. If her mitochondria are the problem, seems like they could just harvest one of Lwaxana's (they haven't killed her off elsewhere, have they?). The mother's mitochondrial DNA (in humans) reproduces separately of the human's nucleus DNA - mitochondria are more or less endosymbiants - and the mitochondrial cell line is completely on the female side with no importation of mitochondrial DNA from daddy...so use some of that wacky DNA manipulation tech and bada bing bada bang - you've cooked yourself up a little 1/4 betazoid baby.
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Old October 4 2008, 03:25 PM   #127
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Re: Star Trek: Destiny: Gods of Night - SPOILER Thread

wew wrote: View Post
You've taken the CMO away from the ship; which potentially could create even larger problems. Yes, I reliaze that other doctors are on the ship, but in this climate of war, you'd probably want your medical personnel readily available. Since directly beaming him back from the planet seems unlikely I see it as a dangerous risk. Of course this just my opinion.
Well, as of Gods of Night, Titan is a couple of thousand light-years away from the war, so that's not an immediate concern for them at this point.
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Old October 4 2008, 03:51 PM   #128
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Re: Star Trek: Destiny: Gods of Night - SPOILER Thread

Sisko_is_my_captain wrote: View Post
Clearly, her DNA is for the most part okay - otherwise she'd be dead or have massive cancer. If her mitochondria are the problem, seems like they could just harvest one of Lwaxana's (they haven't killed her off elsewhere, have they?). The mother's mitochondrial DNA (in humans) reproduces separately of the human's nucleus DNA - mitochondria are more or less endosymbiants - and the mitochondrial cell line is completely on the female side with no importation of mitochondrial DNA from daddy...so use some of that wacky DNA manipulation tech and bada bing bada bang - you've cooked yourself up a little 1/4 betazoid baby.
You phrased it so much better than I did; I was a bit strident in my objection to the medical science -- and Dave, I apologize for that.

The situation, at least as Ree presents it to Deanna, shouldn't be impossible to solve. Assuming that the puzzle can be solved, I wonder if there's a reason why Ree won't solve it. And I think this may be the trick:

The level of genetic reconstruction that would be required -- since it would amount to building an ovum from scratch, taking a Betazoid mitochondria from elsewhere and rebuidling the nucleus from scratch based on other cells from Deanna -- may well run afoul of the Federation's social mores against genetic engineering. Even though the end result is to recreate artificially something that would have been created naturally, the extent of the reconstruction may skirt that line, and hundreds of years of social intertia against genetic manipulation dating back to the Eugenics Wars would be difficult to counteract.

Thus, while Ree may well have the medical skills to build an ovum for Deanna, he may also recognize that proceeding down that path will have repercussions for Deanna and Will -- and eventually, the child that his actions would produce. He would be doing harm right from the start, thus violating the maxim of "First, do no harm." (Even though that phrase is not in the Hippocratic Oath, everything thinks it is, and doctors still abide by it. Though I suppose that Ree would not be bound by Hippocrates, not being human. ) He obviously could not tell the couple about this medical strategy, as that would lead them down the path of potential illegality.

In sum, given the diagnoses, the prohibition against genetic engineering is probably sufficient for Dr. Ree's inability to work the problem to a happy conclusion. As Vale says later in the book, the way someone can tell it's a good compromise is that eveyone winds up unhappy.
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Old October 4 2008, 04:25 PM   #129
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Re: Star Trek: Destiny: Gods of Night - SPOILER Thread

I just finished the book this morning. Great job, David!

some quick observations:
I had just read Kobayashi Maru right before this so the Enterprise parts worked well for me.

I also liked the scene with Tom Paris and his father.

Picard's actions and motivations were very interesting.

Foyle... any relation to Gully Foyle of Alfred Bester fame?

The machinery of the Caeliar and the events on Columbia sort of reminded me of Forbidden Planet (this is a positive observation).

The reader really gets a good idea of what Capt. Hernandez and her crew are like.

I'm excited for the next two volumes!

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Old October 4 2008, 07:04 PM   #130
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Re: Star Trek: Destiny: Gods of Night - SPOILER Thread

First off, my belated apologies to Allyn for my snarky reaction to his entirely correct criticism of the medical science in Gods of Night.

The fact is, medicine is not my forte, and genetics is even less so. In retrospect, I see that I made a scientific mistake; even more irksome to me, I made a dramatic mistake.

Only after reading the logical refutations of Troi's medical crisis and now Allyn's followup, I realize that instead of making this a strictly medical/scientific issue, I should have made it an ethical issue that examined the gray areas related to the Federation's aversion to genetic engineering on already-existing organisms.

C'est la vie. And, might I add .... darn.
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Old October 4 2008, 07:05 PM   #131
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Re: Star Trek: Destiny: Gods of Night - SPOILER Thread

Chi'pok wrote: View Post
Foyle... any relation to Gully Foyle of Alfred Bester fame?
Nope. Major Foyle — and several other characters in the trilogy — are named in honor of characters from various mystery series and police procedural TV shows, some British, some American.
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Old October 4 2008, 08:26 PM   #132
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Re: Star Trek: Destiny: Gods of Night - SPOILER Thread

Sisko_is_my_captain wrote: View Post
The mother's mitochondrial DNA (in humans) reproduces separately of the human's nucleus DNA - mitochondria are more or less endosymbiants - and the mitochondrial cell line is completely on the female side with no importation of mitochondrial DNA from daddy...so use some of that wacky DNA manipulation tech and bada bing bada bang - you've cooked yourself up a little 1/4 betazoid baby.

This is what I get for typing too early in the morning. There's obviously no such thing as a mitochondrial cell line, since mitochondria are not cells - they're organelles which exist within cells, helping to provide cells with energy to function. I should have said "mitochondrial genetic line" rather than "cell line". Other than that, I'm fairly certain the rest of what I said is consistent with everything I've learned in my genetics and evolutionary biology courses.





David, how about this retcon:

from wikipedia:

An individual's mitochondrial genes are not inherited by the same mechanism as nuclear genes. At fertilization of an egg cell by a sperm, the egg nucleus and sperm nucleus each contribute equally to the genetic makeup of the zygote nucleus. In contrast, the mitochondria, and therefore the mitochondrial DNA, usually comes from the egg only. The sperm's mitochondria enter the egg but does not contribute genetic information to the embryo.[58] Instead, paternal mitochondria are marked with ubiquitin to select them for later destruction inside the embryo.[59] The egg cell contains relatively few mitochondria, but it is these mitochondria that survive and divide to populate the cells of the adult organism. Mitochondria are, therefore, in most cases inherited down the female line, known as maternal inheritance. This mode is seen in most organisms including all animals. However, mitochondria in some species can sometimes be inherited paternally. This is the norm among certain coniferous plants, although not in pine trees and yew trees.[60] It has also been suggested that it occurs at a very low level in humans."
Maybe in Deanna's case, Betazoids normally pass down the mitochondrial DNA (mtDNA) via the paternal route (or maybe the paternal and maternal lines combine). Since her human father is dead, maybe there's no way to locate compatable human/betazoid mtDNA to fix her ova's hybrid mitochondria? Of course, that's ignoring the fact that she would have to have undamaged mtDNA in the rest of her body's cells or she'd die.

I think your answer should have been "none of you guys knows anything about Betazoid DNA, so she can't have babies because SHE JUST CAN'T!"
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Old October 4 2008, 09:28 PM   #133
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Re: Star Trek: Destiny: Gods of Night - SPOILER Thread

To paraphrase the ever-wise words of Joel Hodgson:

If you're wondering how she procreates, and other science facts,
Then repeat to yourself, "It's just a book. I should really just relax."

Last edited by William Leisner; October 4 2008 at 09:29 PM. Reason: La-la-la!
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Old October 4 2008, 10:38 PM   #134
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Re: Star Trek: Destiny: Gods of Night - SPOILER Thread

^ So say we all.

Wait: wrong franchise.
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Old October 5 2008, 03:43 AM   #135
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Re: Star Trek: Destiny: Gods of Night - SPOILER Thread

I'm not impressed.

Ten pages of Riker/Troi baby problems or Beverly nagging Jean Luc for every page of the Borg conflict.

Another problem.

The many aliens in the crew of for that matter humans with very complex names often is a distraction.
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