Destiny: Gods of Night by David Mack Review Thread (Spoilers!)

Discussion in 'Trek Literature' started by haubrija, Sep 19, 2008.

?

Grade "Star Trek: Destiny: Gods of Night"

  1. Excellent

    69.7%
  2. Above Average

    22.6%
  3. Average

    5.2%
  4. Below Average

    1.3%
  5. Poor

    1.3%
  1. foravalon

    foravalon Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2004
    Location:
    Santa Rosa, CA
    Re: Star Trek: Destiny Book 1: Gods of Night - (SPOILERS)

    "My Enemy, My Ally" the Rihannsu book by Diane Duane?
     
  2. Defcon

    Defcon Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

    Joined:
    May 9, 2003
    Location:
    Germany
    Re: Star Trek: Destiny Book 1: Gods of Night - (SPOILERS)

    I think you mean Enemy of my Enemy, since at the time My Enemy, my Ally is set neither Voyager nor its crew existed. ;)

    Edit: Damn, hadn't seen that there was another site with a reply.
     
  3. JD

    JD Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2004
    Location:
    Arizona, USA
    Re: Star Trek: Destiny Book 1: Gods of Night - (SPOILERS)

    Yeah Enemy of My Enemy. Sorry about that, I knew it was something with Enemy in it.
     
  4. KRAD

    KRAD Keith R.A. DeCandido Admiral

    Joined:
    Nov 28, 1999
    Location:
    New York City
    Re: Star Trek: Destiny Book 1: Gods of Night - (SPOILERS)

    ^ Hey, it could've been Enemy Unseen or Behind Enemy Lines or Time's Enemy or Enemy Territory. :D
     
  5. JD

    JD Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2004
    Location:
    Arizona, USA
    Re: Star Trek: Destiny Book 1: Gods of Night - (SPOILERS)

    Well, at least I was closer than any those.
     
  6. William Leisner

    William Leisner Scribbler Rear Admiral

    Joined:
    Aug 17, 2003
    Location:
    Minneapolis, MN
  7. adamczar

    adamczar Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

    Joined:
    Feb 13, 2006
    Location:
    Lower Michigan
    Re: Star Trek: Destiny Book 1: Gods of Night - (SPOILERS)

    Small Disclaimer: I've only just finished Book One, so anything I say only pertains to that book and I have no knowledge of how the plot lines develop later on.

    Was I the only one who half-expected Kadohata to crawl back into bed next to someone else after she finished talking with her family back home?

    Maybe so, but for a split second there something about the scene led me to believe, as she slid back under the covers, that someone would be there. Who that would be, exactly, I'm not sure, but it would have gotten me officially engaged in this character rather than just seeing what she's up to out of curiosity. And one hell of a cliffhanger!

    Also, sort of off subject but I picture Kadohata as looking and sounding like the woman who plays Dr. Neela Rasgotra on ER.

    And as others have said, that Riker/Vale hug scene stuck with me. I would like to see more come from that, too, though I'd be uncomfortable with it ever getting physical. I can't see Riker doing that.

    Either way, for both characters, (if this were to happen), I see them absolutely plagued with guilt. And as I imagined Kadohata crawling back into bed with another man after talking with her husband and kids, I pictured a look of pure disgust on her face and contempt for herself.

    Draaaaaa-maaa!

    And as countless others have said, I'm a big fan of the Khitomer scene. While I didn't sob, I did have a bit lump in my throat as the Andorian officer's concern about "why does it matter if we kill ourselves?" was answered in a scope bigger than he or anyone aboard might have imagined: their sacrifice meant that the Klingon Empire would join the war in their honor. Very, very moving stuff.

    Also, the passing reference to the Excaliber made me smile. I actually don't want a follow-up to that, I think it's perfect to leave most of it up to the imagination.
     
  8. Hartzilla2007

    Hartzilla2007 Vice Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2006
    Location:
    Star Trekkin Across the universe.
    Re: Star Trek: Destiny Book 1: Gods of Night - (SPOILERS)

    I just finished the book. It was a great read and very exciting. I did have one problem with it though. During the second Columbia flashback the part covering the trek through the forest to the Caeliar city seemed to drag on. Other then that it was a good book now on the book two. Oh it was also nice that Mack captured how badass Calhoun is.
     
  9. adamczar

    adamczar Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

    Joined:
    Feb 13, 2006
    Location:
    Lower Michigan
    Re: Star Trek: Destiny Book 1: Gods of Night - (SPOILERS)

    I know, as a (unprofessional) writer, I like to know what people liked and what they didn't like about my stories so I can take everything into account when sitting down for the next session. And when I posted my thoughts two entries up I tried hard to think of something I didn't like about the book, and just couldn't do it! But, if I had to choose, you hit it spot on for me. This scene seemed to go on for a few pages too long. Very, very minor gripe but in the interest of fairness thanks for pointing it out and reminding me.
     
  10. JD

    JD Admiral Admiral

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2004
    Location:
    Arizona, USA
    Re: Star Trek: Destiny Book 1: Gods of Night - (SPOILERS)

    The most common choice for Kadohata (and also Krad's pick) is Stephanie Chaves Jacobsen from Battlestar Galactica: Razor (Kendra Shaw) and Terminator: THe Sarah Connor Chronicles (Jesse). According to her Wiki bio she also appeared on Farscape, so she definitely alot of sci-fi cred. (The picture is from T:TSC, which she is currently guest starring in).
     
  11. adamczar

    adamczar Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

    Joined:
    Feb 13, 2006
    Location:
    Lower Michigan
    Re: Star Trek: Destiny Book 1: Gods of Night - (SPOILERS)

    ^ Yeah I saw someone link to that earlier... I think that's a good casting choice, too. In my head though I can't stop picturing the woman from ER. Even her accent is described in the book. Either way they look really similar.

    BTW, I think T:SCC is great :techman:
     
  12. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2001
    Re: Star Trek: Destiny Book 1: Gods of Night - (SPOILERS)

    Except that Parminder Nagra is Indian and Kadohata is a Japanese name. Jacobsen's actually Chinese/European, but at least that's close.
     
  13. David Mack

    David Mack Writer Commodore

    Joined:
    Jan 25, 2003
    Location:
    New York, NY
    Re: Star Trek: Destiny Book 1: Gods of Night - (SPOILERS)

    ^ Besides, in my authorial imagination, Parminder Nagra has already been cast as Captain Rana Desai in the Star Trek Vanguard saga. :D
     
  14. Jean-Luc Picard

    Jean-Luc Picard Lieutenant Red Shirt

    Joined:
    Jan 2, 2009
    Re: Star Trek: Destiny Book 1: Gods of Night - (SPOILERS)

    This thread is pretty old, but I figured reviving it would be better than starting a whole new one for the same purpose.

    Anyway, I finally got around to picking up the Destiny trilogy, and have really sunk my teeth into the first book. So far, "Gods of Night" is a really entertaining read; I've gone in unspoiled, so I don't know what to expect, and it's really making things gripping. I'm pleased with the book's direction, and I'm looking forward to seeing the separate story strands connect. Some thoughts so far:

    *My first impression of the Aventine and her crew is a positive one. Dax seems to be a little fresh and inexperienced within the captain's role, which is how it should be, and these segments have a very different feel to the others. The ship has a distinct tone in comparison with the Enterprise and Titan, which is good.
    *The Titan scenes have been centred more around emotion thus far, which has led to some interesting character developments. Riker's struggles to help his wife and himself, in particular, have been intriguing.
    *The Enterprise scenes have been pretty standard...I really like Choudhury, though.
    *I didn't think I'd enjoy the flashbacks with Hernandez, but I actually am. The time-dilation effects lost me a little, but other than that, this storyline is top-notch.
     
  15. David Mack

    David Mack Writer Commodore

    Joined:
    Jan 25, 2003
    Location:
    New York, NY
    Re: Star Trek: Destiny Book 1: Gods of Night - (SPOILERS)

    ^ Thanks for your comments. Glad to see you're enjoying it so far.
     
  16. Kirr

    Kirr Lieutenant Junior Grade Red Shirt

    Joined:
    Jun 10, 2005
    Re: Star Trek: Destiny Book 1: Gods of Night - (SPOILERS)

    I too just finished Gods of Night (and already have book 2 waiting for me). Like the poster above David, I came into this series unspoiled and thought I'd give my 'review' of sorts.

    I loved this book. I think all the Trek stuff I've read recently has been fantastic (Kobayashi Maru, Greater Than the Sum). A friend told me to give the Enterprise stuff a try (I wasn't a fan of the series), and not that you couldn't read Destiny without it, but these characters make more sense to me because I've read KM and TGTMD. I loved how the story in the 'past' connects to the story in the 'present', it reminded me of some previous trek attemts at comics and books that connected the generations, only it feels much bigger in scope in Destiny. The problems these characters have are real adult problems (miscarriages & infidelity, to name two) and I love that you're not shying away from taking on those issues. In some ways I feel like Trek novels are doing what the show consistently did (at least when Gene was in charge) pushing the boundaries of what's normally done. Media tie in novels don't normally do these things - yet Trek is.

    I loved each part of the story. The Avertine exploring the mystery of the Columbia, and all the while me wondering how it fits in with the story of the Columbia from the past. I really liked how that came together right at the end - though a somewhat unexpected turn with the alien dying. I didn't love the idea of Ezri going into the 'command' track in the DS9 relaunch - but I did enjoy her as a captain here. With a few more familiar faces from DS9, I could really like the idea of an 'Advertine' series (basically the DS9 relaunch brought up to the 'current' timeframe).

    The differences between the Columbia timeframe and the NG timeframe were much easier to spot in a book that shows both eras. The MACOs, the procedures - I liked that Mack was able to take those two eras and make it so easy to see how much things have changed (and yet people face the same problems). The rebellion of the Captain's MACOs and what the lengths they were willing to go to was despicable, and I think it ultimately led to the issue going on in the 24th century, as I think the 'city' that had those traitors has somehow been assimilated by the Borg. But that's just my current theory (again, having only read book 1).

    There are things I like about Titan and things I'm not crazy about. I still don't feel like all the characters 'work' for me. In general, this whole notion of the 'second officer' that seems very important in recent books is lost on me - yeah, Data was second in command, but it was just basically a 'coverage' thing - his JOB was to navigate the ship. Here we've got Tuvok as second officer and what? Tactical maybe, like he was on Voyager? I'm not even sure. We've got a security officer - shouldn't he be the one on Tactical? I've got the same problem with Picard's 'second officer', but we'll come back to her.

    But I like that all is not happy in the world of Riker and Troi. Sure I love these two (they were probably my favorite characters on TNG) but it's good to see them have a real couple fight about a real world problem. Miscarriages happen (my sister-in-law had one, they are fairly common and we don't talk about the effects nearly enough) and sometimes hurt feelings get in the way of two people who love each other. I like it - it's REAL. The doctor is completely insensitive, which I wouldn't stand for in real life, but whatever. By being spurned by Troi, Riker is making a poor choice of finding some comfort (but don't read too much into that word) in the arms of his XO - not a wise choice on his part and I hope it doesn't go too far down that road. What with all the actual Borg attacks, I could have done without the 'training' sequence in the holodeck on Titan. I'd have rather had a 'Q' (that's the Bond 'Q' not the Trek Q) moment where the cyborg guy shows the tech he's been developing instead of doing it in training. In general, I'm just so-so about Titan (not a comment on any author, just the series), just as I've felt for awhile, and while it's nice to see them in the context of this greater story I still feel I wouldn't go out of my way to continue to read this series - and I wish I felt different about it because of my love for Troi/Riker. That said, I like where their story led - and it may well be the most important piece of the puzzle - I think they've found where the 'aliens' from Columbia's past have gone to, and they're the key to closing these pathways somehow. I also suspect these aliens are going to somehow correct Troi's baby issue (convenient that she was on the away mission), but I'm not sure how I'll feel about if it winds up as some Deus Ex Machina. Still, I can't help but notice - girl Riker baby, boy Picard baby - maybe these two families will one day be related. [​IMG]

    The Enterprise E stuff is great. I'd love it even more if we hadn't had so many recent 'Enterprise faces the Borg novels' cause let's not mince words, this is a Borg story (just like Greater Than the Sum was). But it's on a huge scale. Things are happening - worlds are being destroyed, and I don't for a second think this is all going to get erased and a reset button hit at the end of this. These changes seem permanent. I liked Crusher and Geordi's talk about Picard's state of mind around the Borg - very insightful. I enjoy Worf as XO, and I like the new security chief. I still hate Miranda. She's still barely able to remain faithful to her husband, who by the way is taking care of her less than 1 year old twins and 5 year old daughter. There is just nothing there that I like. Is it accurate? Sure, there are women like this. Career driven. She is more important than any other consideration. It's a very 'real' portrayal, again, so I don't discredit the author, but I can also say without hesitation that I don't like her. Anyway, the Enterprise story has seen the most action - they're on the front lines of the war against the Borg, and this is no easy fight. Lots of losses, very few 'nick of time' moments, and even then, there are people who sacrifice themselves to save others. That preview chapter at the end of Greater than the Sum is a real indicator of what this series is like - and I LIKE it.

    Hell, I LOVED this book. I plan to read book 2 in short order - and by then, I'll probably have picked up book 3 and A Singular Destiny too.
     
  17. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2001
    Re: Star Trek: Destiny Book 1: Gods of Night - (SPOILERS)

    Navigating the ship was the job of Geordi, then Wesley, then a succession of minor guest characters and extras like Rager, Allenby, etc. Data's post was operations manager, the same job Harry Kim held on Voyager. He also functioned as de facto science officer, and was third in command after the captain and first officer -- which is what being a second officer means.

    Tactical and security are two different jobs which are conflated onscreen for convenience. Security deals with internal crises and crew/away-team safety; tactical deals with external threats and space combat.

    Initially, Ranul Keru handled both security and tactical duties aboard Titan, per Starfleet convention. But after his injury, he had to be on reduced duty and Tuvok took over his tactical responsibilities. Keru is recovered now, but it's still a worthwhile division of labor.


    She never actually stopped being faithful. The thing with Leybenzon never went beyond flirtation, and it lasted mere weeks before the events of Before Dishonor scuttled it for good. And since they worked things out, everything's been fine between her and Vicenzo, as far as I can recall.
     
  18. Kirr

    Kirr Lieutenant Junior Grade Red Shirt

    Joined:
    Jun 10, 2005
    Re: Star Trek: Destiny Book 1: Gods of Night - (SPOILERS)

    For what it's worth, my issue is less about what Data's job was on Enterprise (ops! knew I didn't have that right) or Keru's or anyone else's - it's more the fact that it's only in recent books that I feel a big deal has been made out of 'second officers' (whereas I'd say it's more important what their actual 'job' is, like Data at ops). I would bet I could go back and reread Q-Squared without seeing a single reference to who is the second officer of Enterprise - yet, it's a very prevalent (and yet, to me unimportant) fact that keeps getting brought up in recent books. But whatever, I can live with it.

    This all depends upon your definition of 'faithful', but I'll go so far as to say that it wasn't just the incident with Leybenzon in BD (which you very handily cleaned up in GttS by the way - in one of the few books I've been 'ok' with Miranda), there's an incident in Gods of Night where she thinks someone is flirting with her on the elevator and she goes to great lengths to say how she's happily married, only to be embarrassed because she wasn't being flirted with (except, then I think we get in the mind of the male from that scene, and I think he was, but whatever) - now perhaps that scene was meant to reinforce the idea that she IS faithful and the Leybenzon incident (which was really just an author error - I love Peter David's work, but an egg is an egg) was just a minor slip - but instead this new scene reinforced my feeling that she's not particularly 'faithful' in that she's much more concerned with people flirting with her than in doing her job. Is it her fault someone's flirting with her? No. But as a married man, my awareness of someone flirting with me is no more than, 'uh, yeah that's nice, whatever, I'm not going to even dignify this with an answer' whereas her response seems more of a case of 'thou doth protest too much'.

    That said, to be honest, none of that has ever really been at the heart of my problem with Miranda. I haven't liked her since she first appeared in this relaunch (Resistance? Q&A?), and that was before the 'incident' above. Part of it is that I don't agree with her life choice. She's choosing to leave behind her family of husband, 1-year-old twins, and a 5-year-old so that she can be second officer on the Enterprise. Now, I've got a 2-year-old and a 4-year-old, and my wife worked for the first year of my first son's life before decided she's rather be home - that said, I'm not a 'the woman should be home taking care of the kid' kind of guy. She chose to do that, and I'd have supported her if she wanted to continue to work - and many women can and do do that, but it requires balance. Miranda's choice shows no balance to me. It's all about 'her'.

    Let me give you an example. Let's say I was offered the position of Vice President of my company, which means a huge salary, but I had to relocate to Iraq. My wife and kids would never go to Iraq. And the position is indefinate, as long as I want to be VP of this division, that's where I'll be with maybe a 'once a year' trip home, and maybe daily calls to my family. Have I just described Miranda's situation? I think I have, and I'd have NEVER chosen her way. I wouldn't miss my kids growing up, not even for a lot of money. Some people would do that, and Miranda is apparently one of them. Frankly, her choice of this is even worse than what I've described above, because for large sums of money I could at least understand the difficulty - Miranda is essentially choosing this for prestige. Come on, it's presitigious to serve as second officer on the Enterprise E. It's like someone giving up their family to be on American Idol. It rubs me wrong.

    Is part of this her husband's fault? I don't remember any more - was he given the choice of joining her on the Enterprise and he turned it down? Then perhaps there's more of a problem in this marriage than mere flirting - because I think there should be some compromise going on here. Could Miranda have found a Starfleet posting closer to home? What's her goal here - indefinate second officer on the flagship, barely ever seeing her kids? Captaincy of her own ship, so she can essentially do the same?

    I don't understand her, and I don't like her - but that's ok. She's well written, and I'm ok with the idea that a character on the Enterprise is someone I don't really like. This isn't the first Trek character I haven't liked, won't be the last.
     
  19. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

    Joined:
    Mar 15, 2001
    Re: Star Trek: Destiny Book 1: Gods of Night - (SPOILERS)

    ^^I don't think Miranda chose her job because of "prestige." She chose it because she's a career scientist, an explorer. That's fundamental to who she is. Her goal isn't to advance her career, it's to discover new worlds and new mysteries of the universe. That's been her life's work, her identity, since long before she became a wife and mother. It's not just a career, it's a calling. Just as it has been for Kirk and Spock and Picard and Riker and so many other Trek characters.
     
  20. Kirr

    Kirr Lieutenant Junior Grade Red Shirt

    Joined:
    Jun 10, 2005
    Re: Star Trek: Destiny Book 1: Gods of Night - (SPOILERS)

    I understand part of that - yes, she's a career scientist, so she wants to continue with that career. But hey, anyone who's had kids knows, you make sacrifices for them - and you want to. She can't find a ship better suited to her family? A posting closer to home that allows her to keep her 'identity' (again, becoming a parent creates a whole new meaning for 'identity' here - I thought I knew what was important until I had kids) and her family. I do think there is an amount of prestige going on here - because I think she could still have her career and balance it out with her family better - but it's the ENTERPRISE!

    For what it's worth, I'll take Miranda (for all her faults and my reasons for disliking her despite every author's attempt to convince me otherwise) over Riker's number 1 on Titan - flawless, overeager, so forgettable I can't remember her name even when I finished Gods of Night only a few days ago (and I've read most of the Titan books too).