Destiny: Lost Souls by David Mack Review Thread (Spoilers!)

Discussion in 'Trek Literature' started by nx1701g, Nov 16, 2008.

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Grade Lost Souls

  1. Excellent

    72.1%
  2. Above Average

    19.1%
  3. Average

    7.1%
  4. Below Average

    0.5%
  5. Poor

    1.1%
  1. Astraea

    Astraea Commander Red Shirt

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    Re: Star Trek: Destiny: Lost Souls - Discuss/Grade

    Wow. That was terrific. I finally got my hands on it today and read it straight through in 2 hours, and immediately wanted A Singular Destiny. It was completely great how all the plot threads wrapped up, and I...could probably keep babbling on about the greatness in only semi-comprehensive sentences, so I'll try to keep this short.

    Some points:
    -I really enjoy Captain Dax. "It's a damned good thing you switched to the command track, Captain. Because if this was you as a counselor, you suck at it."
    -President Bacco. It makes me want to go re-read Articles of the Federation.
    -The resolution of the plot. Like I said, I want the next book, and the next one, and the next one, so I can see how this all unfolds from here.

    All I can say is, I just got out an unexpected five-day stay in the hospital, and this really, really, really made a bad week a heck of a lot better.
     
  2. DGCatAniSiri

    DGCatAniSiri Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Re: Star Trek: Destiny: Lost Souls - Discuss/Grade

    I have to add my voice to the many is saying that I absolutely loved that the Borg were not defeated through some military victory but by the same basic ideals that drive the Federation - compassion, a desire for peace, and understanding. Likewise, I really liked that the Borg evolved (if such a word can be used) from a simple desire. I think one of my favorite lines during the sequence was the gestalt's thought, about the Borg yearning for something, but not knowing what. For once, I had sympathy for the Borg as a whole.

    However, my favorite moment in the book was Geordi's speech to Picard about the thalaron weapon. I loved every line of that.

    Also, I must mention how much I enjoyed the heavy usage of Pava sh'Aqabaa - She was my favorite of the cadets in Omega Squad in the Starfleet Academy comics. However, unless I missed a line, I don't think it was stated whether she made it through the surgery?

    Out of all, though, the affecting emotional moments were at the end, when the threat was over. Seven, or, rather, Annika's simple statement of her name and Tuvok's comment of 'I see no logic in this' moved me more, really, than the death of his son. Until the last paragraph of his section, I didn't know that Elieth was Tuvok's son. However, seeing his reaction... To have a Vulcan even allow anger into his voice is powerfully moving.

    Honestly, right now, I can't wait to see the galaxy begin to put itself back together. Is it February yet?
     
  3. nx1701g

    nx1701g Admiral Admiral

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    Re: Star Trek: Destiny: Lost Souls - Discuss/Grade

    I just have one quick thing to say:

    KRAD, William Leisner, Christopher, and Kirsten you have your work cut out for you in following up what is one of the best Star Trek works in history. Though I am certain you are up for the challenge and can deliver.
     
  4. Chi'pok

    Chi'pok Lieutenant Red Shirt

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    Re: Star Trek: Destiny: Lost Souls - Discuss/Grade

    I have some observations and questions:

    *When Q first introduced the Borg to Picard, et al., we know he wanted to give them a taste of their future and to give them a kick in their complacency. We also know that Q (and the Continuum) are testing humanity. Since it's mentioned in Q&A that everything Q had done was meant to prepare Picard & Co. to meet Them on Gorsach IX; does that include the evolution of the Borg (even tho it occurs after those events)? I imagine so, since humanity had a part in creating the Borg and a large part in their evolution. Will we see Q talking to Picard post-Destiny?

    *DGCatAniSiri said: "I think one of my favorite lines during the sequence was the gestalt's thought, about the Borg yearning for something, but not knowing what. For once, I had sympathy for the Borg as a whole." This makes me think about Spock's line about how desperately V'ger was searching for meaning to its existence until Decker joined with it to give it a human perspective. I saw a lot of parallels between this trilogy and TMP.

    I may have more observations and questions; perhaps with the questions I should wait until ASD, etc.; but these two things I wanted to mention now.

    David, again, fantastic job. Loved it.
     
  5. KRAD

    KRAD Keith R.A. DeCandido Admiral

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    Re: Star Trek: Destiny: Lost Souls - Discuss/Grade

    ^ Part of Q's motivation to introduce humanity to the Borg sooner than expected was to lead to a chain of events that would devastate the Borg. If humanity in general and Picard in particular really were the ones to stop the universe's destruction, then humanity would screw the Borg enough to keep them from finding Gorsach IX (which they did).
     
  6. Silversmok3

    Silversmok3 Commander Red Shirt

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    Re: Star Trek: Destiny: Lost Souls - Discuss/Grade

    Probably because Vger and the 'soul'(for lack of a better term) of the Borg share(d) the same problem:

    They were entities that understood their own existence in the universe,but that's ALL they understood.

    In V'Gers case,all it understood was the greater universe:and that it had seen all of the universe it could ,so unless this 'creater' had more instructions,it would become purposeless,a terrifying prospect for a sentient machine.Its 'evolution' with Decker/Ilia allowed Vger to move past its machine limitations to embrace making its own reason to exist.


    In the case of the Borg,it was motivated by an urge to assimilate and conquer all,an urge motivated by a corrupted intelligence that had long since lost grip of everything but the basic calculus of survival, to seize and possess all that it can by force,or die.

    That's why the Borg do not negotiate or bargain with assimilation any more than a soldier facing death on a battlefield will toss his assault rifle.As far as the collective is concerned unless it assimilates it will perish and it would rather integrate biological distinctiveness to ensure its survival ,than be crushed by that distinctiveness.

    This is also why they go scorched-Earth(excuse the pun) against the Federation,as rather than pursue negotiation the Borg percieved the threat of the UFP's resistance as a threat to the Borgs entire existence,even though logically Starfleet,Romulus,and all the Alpha Quadrant united could never wipe out ALL of the Borg .

    There's just one problem with operating on survival mode:What happens when you've won the contest?

    Once the soldier kills the enemy,he goes home to find another purpose in life.

    Once the lion kills the cheetah,it goes back to its pride for another purpose.

    Once the Borg have assimilated all,that's it.There is no other purpose or reason for the Borg to exist once its former enemies have been assimilated.

    Just like Vger didn't have a reason to exist once it had explored the universe and returned to Earth.

    The Borg,like Vger,needed to banish its limited (and severly corrupted) original motivation to discover a REAL collective in the form of the Caeliar,not the counterfeit one established millenia ago from fear and primal survival.

    Sorry if that was too long for yall ;)
     
  7. William Leisner

    William Leisner Scribbler Rear Admiral

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    Re: Star Trek: Destiny: Lost Souls - Discuss/Grade

    You're telling me.
    From your lips to the editorial office's ears...
     
  8. Stephen!

    Stephen! Captain Captain

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    Re: Star Trek: Destiny: Lost Souls - Discuss/Grade

    The Borg obviously weren't that desperate. There were still some species such as the Kazon which were unworthy of being assimilated.
     
  9. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    Re: Star Trek: Destiny: Lost Souls - Discuss/Grade

    I kinda had it easier than the rest, though. The new post-DES status quo back home is a minor element in Over a Torrent Sea, since Titan is back out exploring deep space again as per Bacco's promise in her big speech. The Destiny followup is mainly in terms of how the characters cope with the personal consequences of the trilogy's events. So mine is the quieter, change-of-pace sidebar story while Keith, Bill, and Kirsten are doing the heavy reconstruction work.

    And Kirsten probably had the toughest task of any of us (besides Dave himself, of course), because she had to do her share of DES followup while simultaneously resolving Christie Golden's VGR Relaunch story threads, advancing the VGR characters' stories across two more years, and integrating all that's been established about them in other books.
     
  10. Silversmok3

    Silversmok3 Commander Red Shirt

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    Re: Star Trek: Destiny: Lost Souls - Discuss/Grade

    I'm curious to see the consequences of the Borg invasion in the new books-will a shadow group take advantage of the affected government's rebuilding from the ashes?

    How do the characters adjust to a universe that is free from Borg threat-and their reactions to families who lost during the siege.

    And,perhaps of critical interest to everyone here,how does LaForge's first date in years turn out ?lol
     
  11. The Grim Ghost

    The Grim Ghost Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Re: Star Trek: Destiny: Lost Souls - Discuss/Grade

    Well I just finished up the Destiny Trilogy. I really enjoyed book 3, almost as much as I enjoyed the 1st two installments.

    My only real problem was Picard's treatment in the book. There was a logical explanation yes, but I felt like he may as well not have been there. He didn't really accomplish anything or help much. Even worse he spends a lot of his time bitching about his ready room and crying on the holodeck. Even considering his emotional state at the time, acting like this while the Federation was about to be destroyed came off as really weak. I feel really let down by Picard's actions in this book. I also feel like his actions are going to be brushed under the rug since by the end we are back to 'happy Picard'. I hope someone addresses this in a future novel.

    I continue to tolerate Dax, though she is never a high point for me. I would really like to see her taken down a peg or two.

    Great to see Bateson pop up again. Martok's scenes were cool. Bacco is always a treat. The Borg origin and resolution was logical, entertaining and well thought out. I really enjoyed Geordi's scene a lot and I hope we will be seeing more of him soon.

    Despite my small criticisms I really liked the whole Trilogy and I'm excited about where things are going from here. Great work David!
     
  12. ronny

    ronny Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Re: Star Trek: Destiny: Lost Souls - Discuss/Grade

    The Borg have been vanquished. :borg: I'm not going to be satisfied if none of the follow up books have some sort of VJ Day type of celebration somewhere. ;)
     
  13. Stephen!

    Stephen! Captain Captain

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    Re: Star Trek: Destiny: Lost Souls - Discuss/Grade

    What exactly was the audacious plan then?
     
  14. William Leisner

    William Leisner Scribbler Rear Admiral

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    Re: Star Trek: Destiny: Lost Souls - Discuss/Grade

    These questions and others will be answered in the next episode of... Soap!



    (THIS IS SARCASM!!!!!)
     
    Last edited: Nov 26, 2008
  15. JD

    JD Admiral Admiral

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    Re: Star Trek: Destiny: Lost Souls - Discuss/Grade

    Were you just being sarcastic there?:D
     
  16. ParticleMan

    ParticleMan Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Re: Star Trek: Destiny: Lost Souls - Discuss/Grade

    I think the audacious plan was the one they ended up taking and that Picard was the one who was unwilling to take the risk. Remember that he didn't like the idea of interfacing Hernandez with the Collective initially and although he voiced his displeasure, but couldn't actually stop Dax from going ahead since they are both captains. He also didn't really like bringing the Caeliar in at the end for fear the Borg would assimilate them and then it would REALLY all be over with...
     
  17. KRAD

    KRAD Keith R.A. DeCandido Admiral

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    Re: Star Trek: Destiny: Lost Souls - Discuss/Grade

    Erm -- sixty-three billion people died. I don't care who you vanquish, that is no cause for celebration of any kind.
     
  18. Enterpriserules

    Enterpriserules Commodore Commodore

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    Re: Star Trek: Destiny: Lost Souls - Discuss/Grade

    Dave your Trilogy is brilliant! This should be a movie series. I looked forward to this series more that I do the new movie because it is quintessentially everything that Star Trek is meant to be. Even in the darkest hour hope springs. Great story, great character work with Dax and Hernandez (Erika was someone that I really liked in ENT and it was great to see her get a chance to save the universe like the greatest of Starfleet captains). It is nice to have Picard back to the hopeful and even deeper man we all loved. Cannot wait to see what happens with Baco, VOY, Titan and DS9. So good!:bolian:
     
  19. LaBarre

    LaBarre Commander Red Shirt

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    Re: Star Trek: Destiny: Lost Souls - Discuss/Grade

    Being a newbie, I mangled the sourcing of the author of the original quote. It was Gauis Polt (p.5 of postings. Apologies to you).

    I'm grateful for Christopher's response, particularly as I thought that he dealt wonderfully with the Picard and Crusher relationship and how that was playing out; thereby giving us some insight into how and why Picard was behaving as he was in these books. I recently reread the poker night scene in GTTS and its aftermath and thought that this was very delicately written.

    It has taken a very long, long, time for TPTB to come to terms with the fact that the fanship also includes women.

    Never the less - and granted that Thanksgiving is on the morn - I really would like to have David's response to the questions above.

    Happy Thanksgiving to all our American friends.
     
  20. Steve Roby

    Steve Roby Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Re: Star Trek: Destiny: Lost Souls - Discuss/Grade

    This is a bit long, being the review posted over at my blog, so I'll hide it behind a spoiler warning. Because there are indeed spoilers. FWIW, I liked it. A lot.

    I should have known better. I was really wondering just how dark the conclusion of the story would be, just how far David Mack was going to go, but instead the book had a surprisingly upbeat ending. Not for everyone, of course, and Nan Bacco quite rightly points out that the Federation and its allies have been badly wounded. But many of our regulars come out of the story in a better place than when they went in -- Picard and Troi in particular. It looks like the former Seven of Nine may come out of the experience as a very different person, though. Still, it's a good conclusion -- the threat is eliminated, but there's a new state of uncertainty that can generate a lot of possible problems for the Federation. And a lot of stories for the writers who'll be picking up the pieces.

    Writing about the first book, I said, "I think a case could be made that it's conveniently coincidental that the Aventine and Titan missions are both connecting to the Caeliar at roughly the same time, but that's not something I'm going to worry about. This is fiction, and in fiction, we usually expect separate storylines to converge at some point." I really should have followed that line of thought a bit farther. I was initially a little surprised that we got some flashback sequences with Pembleton et al in this one, and briefly thought that it was primarily to give the books a parallel structure, each having a major flashback storyline, but it didn't take too long to figure out where things were going. It makes perfect sense, after all, but at the same time, the origin of the Borg is one of those things that's been played around with before and never seemed like a good idea (Shatner's The Return, a story in one of the Tokyopop manga collections). But if you have the freedom and the audacity to not only end the Borg story but also begin it, and you can do it in a way that makes sense in the context of both this particular story and the Star Trek universe as a whole, why not?

    I find myself almost at a loss for things to say this time, because so much has been resolved that I don't have loose threads to pull on. The story's a temporal cloverleaf that loops back to a surprising beginning and ends in a satisfying conclusion. It's elegantly done. There must have been a lot of outlining and careful planning to work out how the time travel elements would play out, which characters would participate in which storylines, and so on. And it all comes together so well. This book couldn't have been written the way too many Star Trek TV cliffhanger stories were done, with the first part finished before the writers started on the second. It had to have been really carefully thought through, but from the reader's perspective, it feels almost effortless.

    I read the first half of the book one Friday night after finishing another book. On Saturday I got up and read through to the end with only the briefest pauses possible. It's a long book, as are the first two volumes, but the momentum of the story pulls the reader through. And Mack's prose helps; it's clean, flowing, and effective.

    Last time I mentioned the shagging line from the second book. One bit I liked this time around: at the bottom of the page, someone advises Martok that the Borg are advancing on several planets, including Rura Penthe. Who cares about Rura Penthe, I thought, and turned the page. "Who cares about Rura Penthe?" Martok asks. It's a little thing, but it makes what could have been just a continuity reference into a believable and funny moment. There are a lot of continuity references in the book, but they serve the purpose of the story rather than simply being padding for trivia buffs.

    The book needed moments like the Cestus III family reunion scene; it was grim at times, and the visit to Deneva reminded the reader of the losses suffered, but there had to be some good, happy stuff. And the scene with Picard and Riker discussing fatherhood was great, reminding us of how well those characters worked together in TNG at its best, while also underlining just how far we've come since the show went off the air.

    All in all, it's a great story that puts the reader and the characters through the wringer but ends positively and with a proper Star Trek sense of hope and new possibilities. It's sort of like the ending of Star Trek – The Motion Picture on a much bigger scale, with the Borg becoming Caeliar reminiscent of the V'Ger probe joining with Decker to create something new. And though there were inevitably be hardships for our heroes to contend with, at least the Borg are done with.

    Now, of course, I can't wait to see what happens next.