Read & Reread "Greater Than The Sum"- My Opinion (Spoilers)

Discussion in 'Trek Literature' started by Dayton3, Aug 20, 2008.

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  1. William Leisner

    William Leisner Scribbler Rear Admiral

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    Sorry... she is cracking jokes and behaving with less than perfect decorum while on duty. She does, however, refrain from having sex on the bridge.
     
  2. Newspaper Taxi

    Newspaper Taxi Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Chris, I was actually directing the living universe thing to Dayton3. I suppose mentioning who you're talking to is a good idea.

    Also, I wouldn't be too ashamed of the sparks line. Sparks flying out of consoles is part of the Trek Canon, after all. Also, now that you mention it, I've never thought about how a person would go about depicting a space battle in a written medium. I'll have to use that as a creative writing exercises someday.

    EDIT:
    Well, we've only read one book with her in it. Who knows what the future has in store?
     
    Last edited: Aug 20, 2008
  3. Dayton Ward

    Dayton Ward Word Pusher Rear Admiral

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    Well, that's nice of her.
     
  4. Thrawn

    Thrawn Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I find it charming, how you feel you know how Star Trek works better than its creators.

    Ask yourself - is T'Ryssa any less military than someone like Barclay? Wesley?
     
  5. wew

    wew Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I read the book and found it very good. I'll admit I was a bit put off by the continual focus on the issue of the Picard-Crusher decision about having a baby, but other than that I found the book a nice read.

    Obviously, several matters had to be solved by Christopher- especially regarding the actions of the newer characters in the previous book. I believe his solution with T'Lana to be an excellent choice, especially since it fits in requirements even by todays standards regarding the fitness of counselor type individuals. Leybenzon was also handled in an appropriate manner, at least in my opinion, he's shown a lack of respect towards officers in general, and his decision made perfect sense. Of course the crux of the matter is the man who thinks he's super-cop, ends up inadvertantely giving the Borg access to a new defense against them, because he overestimates his ability and didn't seem to listen.

    In regard to new characters in this book, I'm not overly fond of T'Ryssa, but as others have noted she is doing her job. Other than that I like the other characters and how they've been used.

    Dayton3, I don't know if you served in the military or not, but I can guarantee that in some types of units you can find more than your share of eccentrics; I know because I served in a unit like that- Very bright individuals who were extremely capable and did their jobs, but not always by the book when it came to protocol. During a hurricane down in Florida one time, one SGT on duty called the a radio station and had them dedicate a song to the unit commander; it was "Take this Job and Shove It." And that was a minor incident compared to others.

    Yes, one has to be careful with how one deals with protocol, etc; yet good officers allow some leeway. I didn't really read anything on T'Ryssa that seems to have been completely overboard.
     
  6. JAG

    JAG Vice Admiral Admiral

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    :rommie::rommie:

    I thought the same way.
     
  7. Dimesdan

    Dimesdan Living the Irish dream. Premium Member

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    I havn't read Greater than the Sum because the book shop it twon said it wasn't being published over here till the first of Septmeber so I have a little wait left. But Christopher, after reading The Buried Age (which I never expected to like, but gobbled it up in a few days as it was so good) and Orions Hounds, plus from what people have written about GTTS I really can not wait to read it and I might actually do something I've been meaning too for far to long and write a review!

    I just want to address Dayton3 about his comments.

    What you said is exceptionally arrogant and condesending (most of your comments are actually) and you come across as one of the worst form of religious bigets, you have a singular notion that for what ever reason quiet a few religious people have that they are always right. Well, your not, the good men and women who are employed to continue the Trek flame do so while haveing a full time job, they do it because they love Trek and want to share their visions with everyone else. Now I'm all for constructive critisim, but in your review, you came across as immature, argumentative and just looking for a fight.

    Oh and one final note, three guys in fours months is no big deal, everyone likes sex (with the right partner) and it's what we all do at least a few times in our lives, it's just a shame that narrow minded god bothers try to make out it's wrong and the like as the year is 2008, not 1888.
     
  8. tenmei

    tenmei Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Uhm, Dan, I might have missed a post but when did anyone bring religion into the debate - you're the first one to bring in religion (and I've reviewed the thread) ? I have to agree with a lot (not all, because I liked the Noh Angels) of what Dayton3 said about the character of T'Rys (not the multiple partner thing but I do have to wonder how she got through Starfleet Academy - and the Barclay Defence just doesn't work for me, from what I recall he was a professional on duty and just an oddball off duty whilst T'Rys can be arguably both a bad example to junior officers and borderline insubordinate at times) and the whole Beverley/Jean Luc situation.

    Picard put the idea of having children aside whilst they fought the Borg but Crusher did keep harping on about it every opportunity she got. One thing that personally annoyed me about the whole story (now I've finished the novel wholesale) was that Picard wouldn't reactivate himself as Locutus because he had Beverley and that they (or she, at that point) wanted to have kids whereas he was perfectly happy for Hugh (who had Rebekah and wanted kids too) to throw himself on the sword. Hypocritical much?

    So, yeah, I have a problem with T'Rys and I have a bit of a problem with the Picard/Crusher relationship and maybe GTTS isn't my favourite book by the author (Orion's Hounds is) but it's certainly not my least favourite (I found Buried Age to be impenetrable).

    I think I'm more annoyed by this thread and others like it, where if someone dares to criticise a book strongly they'll end up getting slammed by the other posters. It's gotten to the point where I'm hesitant about posting comments about things in the books that I don't like.
     
  9. Rosalind

    Rosalind TrekLit's Dr Rose Mod Admiral

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    guys, post not the poster.

    in other words, let's discuss/attack/defend the book and not each other, okay? Thanks.
     
  10. Dimesdan

    Dimesdan Living the Irish dream. Premium Member

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    My bad, I just linked his opinions with his religious opinions which is something I wouldn't ordinarily do, but too many late nights and early mornings are catching up with me.

    As for

    I understand your point, and maybe this contradictory from what I've previously wrote, but I am not a fan of critisim for critisim sacks, I personally believe that if you are going to critise something, you should back it up with why you didn't like it and further more, you should give possible alternatives to what you disliked. This is something that I confess rarely occurs and even though I do not mean any disrespect towards the writers, such a course of action might just prevent people being slammed for there opinions even if it does come across as a tad arrogant.
     
    Last edited: Aug 20, 2008
  11. tenmei

    tenmei Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Problem with suggesting alternatives is that they could be taken as suggesting story ideas which we're not allowed to do.

    Anyway, just rereading the last few chapters and the decision by Qing Long to send out parts of itself to reproduce, then the subsequent conversation between Picard and T'Rys and T'Rys says that 'something that doesn't reproduce, doesn't create something new and different out of itself, isn't contributing to life' could be taken as slamming anyone who cannot or does not want to procreate and saying that those people (homosexual, heterosexual, it doesn't matter) don't contribute to life and to the world and could be quite insulting. I don't think contribution to life is dependant upon reproduction.
     
  12. Steve Roby

    Steve Roby Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I think religion is a likely subtext in posts complaining that a fictional character has sex. Maybe there are other reasons to hate the idea of people having sex without being married, but I'm not sure what they might be.
     
  13. Rosalind

    Rosalind TrekLit's Dr Rose Mod Admiral

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    I need to ask this, Christopher: "Qing Long"? what, who, how, why... okay, I guess why that name? :)
     
  14. ATimson

    ATimson Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    A belief that people shouldn't do something unless they're willing and able to handle the potential consequences (namely, a child), for one.

    Of course, by the 24th century their birth control is hopefully more advanced than ours. But at the moment... well, some people obviously never learned how to use it, unfortunately for their children.
     
  15. Dayton3

    Dayton3 Admiral

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    One could make the strong argument that sex with fellow crewman (or co-workers) is damaging to the overall work environment and unit morale.

    21st century birth control is nearly 100% effective if used properly.

    Another thing I found difficult to fathom is Picard's almost suicidal desire to be the one who gets to be assimilated and infect the Borg with the attack agent or whatever it is called.

    I get tired to this stuff about captains in Starfleet putting themselves in danger.

    Wouldn't it occur to them that they are a major asset of Starfleets and the Federation? Especially Picard with his knowledge of the Borg.

    Carrier captains in the U.S. Navy don't fly F/A-18s into combat.
     
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  16. Rosalind

    Rosalind TrekLit's Dr Rose Mod Admiral

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    Dayton3, you've been here long enough to know posting three times in a row is considered spam, for now I've merged all three of your posts (and because I haven't used this feature yet :) ), please don't do it again.
     
  17. ATimson

    ATimson Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Congratulations: you just broke this thread's threading.
     
  18. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    I think a lot of people are missing the point about T'Ryssa's sexuality. She's promiscuous at first, as a manifestation of her fear of commitment and tendency to run away when things get serious. Over the course of the book, she matures and decides to stay in an ongoing relationship with Rennan Konya rather than acting on her initial impulse to dump him. She's still with Rennan at the Christmas party a month after the main body of the book.


    Telling Marco wouldn't serve any purpose since Margaret Clark edited the book.


    Definitely not. That was just Trys being facetious and flattering her boss/friend in order to get out of an unwanted duty.


    At least while Picard is there... ;)


    "Starfleet is not a military organization. Our purpose is exploration." -- Jean-Luc Picard, "Peak Performance"

    Starfleet has a side that's more military and a side that's more scientific. I imagine that if Trys had enrolled in, say, a security or tactical career track, she would've washed out. But she pursued a science track instead, and I imagine there's more leeway given there.


    You raise a good point. Is Trys's behavior really any worse than Leybenzon's? Trys doesn't intend to be disrespectful toward her superiors (except Kadohata at first, but there were mommy issues there), she's just kind of hyper and has difficulty reining herself in. But she does make a sincere effort and has genuine respect and deference toward Picard. Leybenzon, on the other hand, was a career soldier who should've long since mastered proper discipline, and yet he treated his superior officers with open contempt and defiance.

    M*A*S*H springs to mind, which reminds me that SCE was heavily influenced by that show. Starfleet has its share of irreverent jokers, including Fabian Stevens, as well as better-known characters such as Tom Paris.


    Because she felt he was putting it aside for the wrong reasons, that it was a symptom of an unresolved issue within himself that he needed to confront and deal with. And she was right.

    Picard wasn't the least bit happy to let Hugh sacrifice himself. See pages 271-2. The point was that it wasn't his decision to make. Hugh was a free agent who could make his own choices.


    Absolutely not what I intended. I personally have no particular plans to procreate, so I certainly don't have anything against people who don't do so. T'Ryssa's line that you quoted was referring to species rather than individuals (and the cluster entity is arguably both). Also, she was describing the entity's interpretation of what Picard and she had taught it, not making a statement of her own beliefs (since it's a cinch she's not thinking about having kids any time in the foreseeable future).

    I explained that in the text -- the star cluster they're in is in the constellation Scorpius, which is known in Chinese mythology as the tail of Qing Long, the Azure Dragon of the East. Since T'Ryssa's human ancestry is Chinese, it makes sense that she'd be aware of that astronomical tradition. For further explanation of my rationale, see my annotations for Chapter 10.
     
  19. Allyn Gibson

    Allyn Gibson Vice Admiral Admiral

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    I realize this is more of a meta issue, but I have to ask.

    How does that rule even make sense? To be honest, I've been here for eight years, and I'd never heard of the rule. Someone's going to run afoul of it just by responding to several posts at once. It strikes me as an arbitrary rule that has no positive benefits and is ultimately pointless for its own sake.
     
  20. Dimesdan

    Dimesdan Living the Irish dream. Premium Member

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    I'm not completely apt at making multiple posts from mutiple posts but I am going to try and address a few issues which have popped up while Iive been gone.

    tenmei: Thats a good point about saying what we thought could be better a story could be construded as story ideas which is frowned upon (with good reason) but if you stating those after the event, which a review often is can still be classified under that?

    Steve Roby: Thats the logic I was using as well when commenting on what Dayton3 had said: I understand we are all different and that we all have our own opinions etc etc, but it really does annoy me when a person makes a comment about how sex is wrong out of wed lock (for example) because a book which is in one version or another been around for 2000 years which to be honest, there is no verafiable truth that these events happened says it's wrong. But then again, the other side of the coin (which I believe) is that sex is great under the right circumstances and with the right person, so screw what some ex nazi in the Vatican has to say on the matter.

    Dayton3: I know according to Thine Own Self, to become a bridge officer and the rank of Commander, you must be willing to order a member of crew under your command to there potential death and given Jean Lucs history with the Borg, do you think he would willingly order a crew member to be assimilated and infect the Borg when he knew that he could very well do that himself knowing that he might very well destroy the Borg threat.

    As for sex with a fellow crew member, on a much smaller compliment, it may cause problems if things went pair shaped, but with a crew of over eight hundred, unless they were in the same department, I doubt it would cause a problem as they are all adults.
     
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