TP: Rough Beasts of Empire by DRGIII Review Thread (Spoilers!)

Discussion in 'Trek Literature' started by Thrawn, Dec 22, 2010.

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Rate Rough Beasts Of Empire

  1. Outstanding

    38 vote(s)
    26.2%
  2. Above Average

    60 vote(s)
    41.4%
  3. Average

    25 vote(s)
    17.2%
  4. Below Average

    13 vote(s)
    9.0%
  5. Poor

    9 vote(s)
    6.2%
  1. rfmcdpei

    rfmcdpei Captain Captain

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    Re: Typhon Pact: Rough Beasts Of Empire review thread

    The Sisko segment reminded me of Season 6 Buffy, actually.

    It hurt to see Sisko and his--characters I care about--be so horribly depressed and self-destructive, but it made sense that they could and would do that, and the story of how this could happen was compelling.

     
  2. TerraUnam

    TerraUnam Commander Red Shirt

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    Re: Typhon Pact: Rough Beasts Of Empire review thread

    Articles of the Federation had it down to his failures in the Khitomer Conference and the death of Chancellor Gorkon.

    Other than that it's never been really explained other than in "Unification" as his bit to bring more Vulcans/Romulans to Surak.
     
  3. kaysea

    kaysea Ensign Red Shirt

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    Re: Typhon Pact: Rough Beasts Of Empire review thread

    I just finished reading it and I give it a 4.5/5. It was a good fucking read. It was nicely paced, entertaining and I kept on wanting to read more. I even had some HOLY SHIT! just like that huh? moments ... with the deaths and all,which is a good thing.

    The only problem I had with it was the whole Sisko thing. I never read anything post DS9 series specifically regarding him until now and I must say I'm not entirely digging the whole sullen moping thing he has been portraying throughout the novel. It just seems so unlike Captain Sisko. Anyways keep up the good work David R George III I will read more of your books.

    To the guy wanting to know what the Tzenethi are here's an excerpt;

    Excerpt deleted

    Oh and the Tzenkethi have unrestricted "castes" for their peoples which is determined by genetics ... and they fly around in tear droped ships
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Dec 30, 2010
  4. Rosalind

    Rosalind TrekLit's Dr Rose Mod Admiral

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    Re: Typhon Pact: Rough Beasts Of Empire review thread

    ^ Sorry kaysea, I know you're trying to do a nice thing for your fellow posters, but David has requested that the passage be deleted (considering the book only just start to appear in the shops).
     
  5. Clem1029

    Clem1029 Ensign Red Shirt

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    Re: Typhon Pact: Rough Beasts Of Empire review thread

    I finished the book yesterday, and I've been stewing on my reaction since then. In a vacuum, it's definitely a good read, but it comes off as a bit...frustrating with some of it's contributions to many ongoing narratives.

    The look into Spock's ongoing unification movement provided a nice framing for everything going on in the Empire right at this point. It was definitely interesting to see Spock and his movement get played as part of Tal'Aura's plan to bring down Donatra. Also, as positioning, bringing the Movement out of the shadows and underground into the "mainstream" (for lack of a better word) works pretty well - if nothing else, it at least sets up the foundation for why, say, the Romulan government would listing to Spock when the ST09 supernova comes.

    All that said...isn't the Romulan storyline just a Nemesis reset? Don't get me wrong, the machinations that go into it are interesting to read, but the end game is what? Reconstituted Senate with all the political structure introduced in Trek Lore, reintegration of the empire (getting rid of the IRS so quickly was one of the bigger surprises in this book), anyone associated with Shinzon and events immediately following are gone...the Empire itself is right back to where it was before Shinzon. OK, sure, as part of the TP it's by definition different, but after all the time spent setting up the post-Nemesis empire(s), it just seems to wipe the slate clean and make the future narratives strictly Typhon Pact related. Not that it's a bad thing, but the payoff isn't here in this book - it's going to come whenever we revisit Romulus next.

    The Tzenkethi parts were well developed without dominating the rest of the storyline. I loved the idea that there's going to be some internal manipulation by Typhon Pact members, and as muchas the Romulans might like to think they're the power brokers, setting the Tzenkethi up as pulling the strings in the background is a fun move with much future potential.

    Argh. Sigh. Ugh.

    Before I get going here, I should point out my own biases - I've been excited about the Typhon Pact books for 2 reasons - 1) the concept and post-Destiny cleanup seemed awesome and 2) we finally get some more DS9-related goodness (or what I hoped to be goodness). I'm a total unapologetic DS9R cheerleader.

    The Sisko stuff is hugely frustrating. I can sort of see the argument that all this crap hitting the fan can destroy a man's soul causing him to take drastic actions. Unfortunately, we don't get to SEE the crap hit the fan over the previous 5 years. We don't get to see the tension with Kasidy develop organically. Instead, we're forced into a situation where probably the consummate family man in Trek history (with O'Brien being in that discussion as well) abandons his family because of...what? I can't see how a man who had all sorts of crap thrown at him in his lifetime suddenly doesn't realize that sometimes bad things happen, everyone dies eventually, and that it's all completely beyond his control. It's like he came down with a massive "the universe revolves around me" complex - our friends on Bajor died? It's because I married Kassidy. The Borg invaded? Because I married Kassidy. Vaughn is brain dead? Kassidy again. My dad died? Yep, you guessed it, because I made the decision to love and commit my life to Kassidy and start a family. What sort of God-complex did he come down with during his time with the Prophets? Plus, with the line of "the Prophets have left him after his use was up," he comes off as nothing more than an addict - trying to get that next hit, wondering where the high is and why it isn't as high, and despondent with the withdrawal.

    The flip side to this is that it's possible to see someone hitting this rock bottom and making drastic decisions based on any rationalization he can come up with. But we don't get to see that - we're treated to what looks like a complete character break rather than normal character development. To be fair, this isn't the fault of the book or of the author - it's the result of the DS9 Great Leap forward. There's no context to his actions - it's just a jarring jump.

    • It was nice to see what happened to Vaughn from what we saw in ZSG. He's not dead, and they're not pulling the plug, so I'm guessing there's something for this storyline down the way. If I were a betting man, I'd suggest there's going to be something Prophet-related going on with him at the end of the day.
    • Vedek Kira - from Attained to Vedek in 5 years? Not too shabby. Again, this is something that I could buy into, but it happens with little-to-no context.
    • The Ascendants - apparently that was a thing that happened.

    I hate to say it (because it would serious bum me out if it were true), the DS9R threads in the Typhon Pact books almost seem to be the epilogue to the DS9 story. It just comes off as cleaning up/cutting various hanging threads, reposition all the characters to different points in their lives, completely remove/separate everyone, and end the ongoing stories. 2 starships with new crews, practically a 3rd new crew on the station, plus all the Bajoran religious/political happenings (along with whatever ends up going on with Shar in Paths of Disharmony)...it just seems too much for a DS9 branded series to keep up with and do justice to. Instead, spread everyone out, look in on them/have them show up randomly from time to time in other novels, but the "Season 8" style of the relaunch (Avatar through Unity) seems to be a thing of the past. From a publication/editorial perspective this makes some level of sense - remove one ongoing series from the rotation, instead work it into the main narrative and just rebrand everything under the "Star Trek" moniker.

    I really hope I'm wrong about this, but after ZSG and RBoE, I can't shake the feeling that the DS9 relaunch (such that it was) is over.

    Anywho, enough of my rambling - RBoE is a good read in a vacuum, a frustrating read for the ongoing story threads, but mostly comes off as repositioning and setup for whatever comes "next."
     
  6. kaysea

    kaysea Ensign Red Shirt

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    Re: Typhon Pact: Rough Beasts Of Empire review thread

    .
     
    Last edited: Dec 30, 2010
  7. KingstonTrekker

    KingstonTrekker Commander Red Shirt

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    Re: Typhon Pact: Rough Beasts Of Empire review thread

    You are not getting it...the author has asked that such specific details not be shared in this thread because the book has just appeared in book stores. Why do you feel the need to describe to us what the Tzenkethi look like? If people want to know, they can read the book. Describing the Tzenkethi does not add anything to a review/discussion of the book in this thread.
     
  8. kaysea

    kaysea Ensign Red Shirt

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    Re: Typhon Pact: Rough Beasts Of Empire review thread

    ... because the excerpt was a word for word text of the Tzenkethi description. I can see David having a problem with that. But I can't put a summary of what they look like? that's ridiculous.

    Why do I feel the need? because someone simply asked to know what the Tzenkethi are.
     
  9. David R. George III

    David R. George III Writer Fleet Captain

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    Re: Typhon Pact: Rough Beasts Of Empire review thread

    ^ Could you at least put the details in spoiler tags please? My novel just came out, and I'd appreciate a little consideration of that.
     
  10. kaysea

    kaysea Ensign Red Shirt

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    Re: Typhon Pact: Rough Beasts Of Empire review thread

    ok done
     
  11. David R. George III

    David R. George III Writer Fleet Captain

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    Re: Typhon Pact: Rough Beasts Of Empire review thread

    ^ Thank you (although honestly, I'd prefer you use your own words, rather than mine; just because you don't enclose my words in quotation marks does not mean that's not my description).
     
  12. kaysea

    kaysea Ensign Red Shirt

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    Re: Typhon Pact: Rough Beasts Of Empire review thread

    OK fuck it. I just deleted it, happy? satisfied now? not worth the hassle.

    On a side note good work on the book. I had fun guessing who was actually doing the plotting.
     
  13. KingstonTrekker

    KingstonTrekker Commander Red Shirt

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    Re: Typhon Pact: Rough Beasts Of Empire review thread

    There is no need for foul language.

    You did not understand the moderator's comments and you then proceeded to plagiarize the author with your "summary"...and now you are upset? The way I see it, you definitely did create a bit of a hassle in this thread -- be frustrated with yourself rather than others since the person who caused hassles here was you. That should make you stop and think "Gee...maybe the problem is with me" rather than branding people's reactions to your post as being "ridiculous."
     
  14. kaysea

    kaysea Ensign Red Shirt

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    Re: Typhon Pact: Rough Beasts Of Empire review thread

    ugh, whatever guy. You need to lighten up.

    ON that note I'm off this forum. Its not for me. David, good luck selling your books.
     
  15. rfmcdpei

    rfmcdpei Captain Captain

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    Re: Typhon Pact: Rough Beasts Of Empire review thread

    My take?

    While an extended discussion of the internal divisions of Romulan civilization, manifested by an interstate cold war, would have been fun, there probably would have been a RSE-IRS conflict sooner or later that could easily lead to a Typhon-vs-Khitomer war. I've had enough massive galactic armed conflicts for now, thanks.

    The Tzenkethi engineering Romulan civilization's reunification on a pragmatic praetor not inclined towards showy attempts at galactic conquest is interesting. First, the Tzenkethi are doing it; great species/civilization! Second, the shift of Romulus towards a more peaceful but also more engaged mindset opens up all kinds of interesting possibilities for interaction. We've had an introverted but aggressive Romulan civilization since forever. What would a less aggressive and more open Romulan civilization look like?

     
  16. ProtoAvatar

    ProtoAvatar Fleet Captain

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    Re: Typhon Pact: Rough Beasts Of Empire review thread

    About the romulans - their home planet is due to be pulverised in a few years. They'll need all the internal stability they can get to get through that.

    About Sisko (and, without exception, all the other DS9 characters presented in the Typhon Pact books that had more than 2-3 lines) - their characterisation has been unsatisfactory; too abrupt, too rushed.

    A while ago, on these forums it was discussed whether the 5 year jump for the DS9 Relaunch was a good ideea or not.
    For me, the books so far settled the matter:
    -the characters' development suffered, it's not organic, but eclectic, the characters seem all over the place; also, they have become too spread out;
    -plot threads that were anticipated/developed extensively were dropped - ex, the Ascendants; it's obvious it was decided to abandon previously prepared plot-lines;
    -at this point, if the DS9 Relaunch is to continue, it will have little in common - beyond the setting - with what came before.
     
  17. rfmcdpei

    rfmcdpei Captain Captain

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    Re: Typhon Pact: Rough Beasts Of Empire review thread

    Quite. Between that and the Empire's integration with the Typhon Pact, it looks like the Romulans are going to be pushed into much greater interactions with the surrounding civilizations at a person-to-person level. This could be interesting: will viinerine be as common as raktajino?

    I agree in certain respects--the five-year gap is a bit much--but what led to the stagnation of the relaunch in the first place?
     
  18. flemm

    flemm Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Re: Typhon Pact: Rough Beasts Of Empire review thread

    A variety of circumstances. Delays and changes of author on one of the relaunch titles. Changes in the editorial staff at Pocket. The gap between the DS9-R and the other TNG-era books. The Destiny event. It was eventually decided to bring the DS9-R up to speed with the rest of the post-Destiny narrative. That is what is happening in the Typhon Pact titles, albeit in a rather uninspired manner imo.

    One the one hand, yeah, some of these choices, especially the ones in RBoE, don't feel very promising as far as future DS9 stories are concerned. On the other hand, the pieces are still there on the table for a future writer to pick up and put back together. It's a bit tricky because the DS9 crew can't be easily plugged into a standard Trek narrative the way the crews of TNG, Voyager, Titan and others can. So, we'll see. The DS9-R as an on-going story of its own is dead, but I do think that at some point an author will come up with a compelling story for these characters, at which time hopefully we will get a couple of DS9 novels in relatively quick succession.
     
  19. Deranged Nasat

    Deranged Nasat Vice Admiral Admiral

    Re: Typhon Pact: Rough Beasts Of Empire review thread

    I'm still waiting for both this and Seize the Fire! :lol: I'm growing impaitent. Must resist urge to read spoilers....
     
  20. starri

    starri Lieutenant Red Shirt

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    Re: Typhon Pact: Rough Beasts Of Empire review thread

    David: Just for the record, even though I didn't love the book, I think you, and Christopher, and all our other wonderful authors deserve a lot of credit for being so great about answering criticism. And even when I don't love every plot twist and all of that, I certainly know how much you all love ST, and how glad I am that we've got a whole stable of authors who are willing to undertake all this as a labor of love.

    I figured it was the least I could say after my Negative Nancy comments
     

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