Spoilers TNG: The Stuff of Dreams by James Swallow Review Thread

Discussion in 'Trek Literature' started by Sho, Mar 16, 2013.

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Rate The Stuff of Dreams.

  1. Outstanding

    17 vote(s)
    31.5%
  2. Above Average

    25 vote(s)
    46.3%
  3. Average

    11 vote(s)
    20.4%
  4. Below Average

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  5. Poor

    1 vote(s)
    1.9%
  1. JWolf

    JWolf Commodore Commodore

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    Re: TNG: The Stuff of Dreams by James Swallow Review Thread (Spoilers!

    It's short. You have a computer. So there's no reason not to read this one just because it's an eBook only. If you have a smartphone, there are apps for that. If you have a tablet, there are apps for that. And because you have a computer, there are programs for that.
     
  2. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    Re: TNG: The Stuff of Dreams by James Swallow Review Thread (Spoilers!

    Although, of course, no novel is ever "essential" to any other novel unless it's explicitly part of the same duology or trilogy. It's not like we're deliberately trying to confuse our readers.
     
  3. Markonian

    Markonian Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Re: TNG: The Stuff of Dreams by James Swallow Review Thread (Spoilers!

    Great to have a new 24th century outing before later this year. Also, the Kinshaya appear to be underused to me, so it was an extra bonus to see them again and get an update on their political situation since The Struggle Within.

    Concerning e-books and generally shorter stories: You can have complete stories that don't feel rushed. I'm used to reading Heftromane (pulp fiction?) in series. There's a new novel coming out every two weeks. Condensed on 64 pages, it still manages to tell a complete adventure and toeing the line between standalone (so that new readers can pick up any novel) and serialisation (ongoing plot thread, usually resolved every 50 novels).

    Do be honest, I've read only a part of SCE by now but I plan to revisit the series in full sometime but I'm lagging behind on other series that I want to complete reading first.

    These short stories are a nice way to answer the question "Whatever happened to the planet of the week afterwards?", as SCE did it sometimes (e.g. Progress).
     
  4. rfmcdpei

    rfmcdpei Captain Captain

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    Re: TNG: The Stuff of Dreams by James Swallow Review Thread (Spoilers!

    I was quite impressed by The Stuff of Dreams.

    It's a bit of a sad book, another title dealing with the aftermath of the Borg's rampages whether in the persons of Soran or the novella's nominal villain. (The ending of his story, too, is as bittersweet as anything I've come across.)

    It was good to see the Nexus, nice to see the Kinshaya again, and a good entry overall.
     
  5. Avro Arrow

    Avro Arrow Commodore Commodore

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    Re: TNG: The Stuff of Dreams by James Swallow Review Thread (Spoilers!

    I rather enjoyed this one.

    One thing that struck me about The Stuff of Dreams is that the story fit into the novella size very well. When I had read The Struggle Within, it seemed to me that it was a full novel compressed down to novella length. (Note that I'm not trying to say that this is how it was actually created; it's just an impression that I had when reading it. It just seemed too short for the story it was trying to contain.) But TSoD just seemed to fit its size restrictions much better.

    Not sure if I'm explaining this thought very well, but I'm tired, so I hope you get the idea.
     
  6. Kertrats47

    Kertrats47 Commodore Commodore

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    Re: TNG: The Stuff of Dreams by James Swallow Review Thread (Spoilers!

    I know exactly what you mean, and I felt the same way. At no point did I think to myself that it was too short or that I wanted more than what was presented. The story fit the format perfectly.
     
  7. Enterpriserules

    Enterpriserules Commodore Commodore

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    Re: TNG: The Stuff of Dreams by James Swallow Review Thread (Spoilers!

    I got a chance to talk to James about this book in our latest Literary Treks podcast that is out!
     
  8. rfmcdpei

    rfmcdpei Captain Captain

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    Re: TNG: The Stuff of Dreams by James Swallow Review Thread (Spoilers!

    It was a good episode. When does filming begin?
     
  9. JWolf

    JWolf Commodore Commodore

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    Re: TNG: The Stuff of Dreams by James Swallow Review Thread (Spoilers!

    I just realized I forgot to vote. My vote just broke the tie.
     
  10. Patrick O'Brien

    Patrick O'Brien Captain Captain

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    Re: TNG: The Stuff of Dreams by James Swallow Review Thread (Spoilers!

    Great episode. I am going to give the book a read later today:bolian:
     
  11. Enterpriserules

    Enterpriserules Commodore Commodore

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    Re: TNG: The Stuff of Dreams by James Swallow Review Thread (Spoilers!

    You'll enjoy it! It's a great read and can be read in a quick sitting.
     
  12. jla1987

    jla1987 Ensign Red Shirt

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    Re: TNG: The Stuff of Dreams by James Swallow Review Thread (Spoilers!

    Finished it today and I must admit it's easily the best Trek novella I've ever read. :techman:
     
  13. Enterpriserules

    Enterpriserules Commodore Commodore

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    Re: TNG: The Stuff of Dreams by James Swallow Review Thread (Spoilers!

    I completely agree! This is a standout for me!
     
  14. CNash

    CNash Lieutenant Junior Grade Red Shirt

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    Re: TNG: The Stuff of Dreams by James Swallow Review Thread (Spoilers!

    The two stories don't really impact each other. The Nexus is only present in Engines of Destruction in the context of its appearance in the Generations prologue; the TNG portions of the story are set during season 6 of the show, so Picard's visit to the Nexus hasn't happened yet. Also, EoD doesn't really look at the interior reality of the Nexus, whereas The Stuff of Dreams does.

    I enjoyed The Stuff of Dreams. Like others have said, it felt more like an episode of the show than the full-length novels; the eBook novella format is just the right size to tell these simple episodic stories, and I do wish SCE hadn't had to end. That said, I found the "whodunnit" mystery more compelling than the parts of the story inside the Nexus, which felt too much like a regurgitation of Generations' plot.
     
  15. Patrick O'Brien

    Patrick O'Brien Captain Captain

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    Re: TNG: The Stuff of Dreams by James Swallow Review Thread (Spoilers!

    You are right. I finished it in one day:) I voted above average:bolian:
     
  16. FatherRob

    FatherRob Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

  17. Sisko_is_my_captain

    Sisko_is_my_captain Captain Captain

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    Re: TNG: The Stuff of Dreams by James Swallow Review Thread (Spoilers!

    A very entertaining read.


    Šmrhová seemed very bloodthirsty in this novela, particularly when she set her phaser to kill and put it to the head of her prisoner. “War has a way of changing people," Worf said, but even so, this doesn't seem like the kind of attitude that Picard would tolerate in one of his security officers.

    I was interested in the notion of the Nexus being an artificial construct, and was disappointed that nothing more was done with the supposition.

    Echo-Soran's comment that "Real"-Soran never found peace when he returned to the Nexus was surprisingly tragic. That poor man.

    Kolb's exit from the Nexus to die alongside his family was quite moving.

    The inclusion of Wesley in Picard's Nexus fantasy intrigued me. I kept wondering if he would reveal himself to be the 'real' Wes, making use of his Traveler powers to help Picard see his way out of the Nexus again. He certainly seemed to be dropping lots of hints (“Styris IV"; "The stuff of dreams") that wouldn't be inconsistent with that interpretation.
     
  18. trash80

    trash80 Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    Re: TNG: The Stuff of Dreams by James Swallow Review Thread (Spoilers!

    Enjoyable story, i do find the Kinshaya a bit campy though
     
  19. JD

    JD Admiral Admiral

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    I just finished this earlier today and I really enjoyed it.
    I seem to be one of the few people who actually likes Generations, so I really liked revisiting the Nexus. I also liked getting to see the Kinshaya again. I did think it was a little obvious who was responsible for sabotage, especially once they cleared their first suspect, but it didn't take Picard to long to figure it out, so I wasn't to frustrated.
    It gave us some really nice character stuff for Picard, especially one he was back in the Nexus. I really liked the idea that he didn't need the Nexus fantasy because he was so happy in the real world.
    I voted above average.
     
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