TP: Seize the Fire by Michael A. Martin Review Thread (Spoilers!)

Discussion in 'Trek Literature' started by Thrawn, Nov 21, 2010.

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Rate Seize The Fire.

  1. Outstanding

    6 vote(s)
    5.3%
  2. Above Average

    25 vote(s)
    21.9%
  3. Average

    32 vote(s)
    28.1%
  4. Below Average

    33 vote(s)
    28.9%
  5. Poor

    18 vote(s)
    15.8%
  1. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    Re: Typhon Pact: Seize The Fire review thread

    I think the Tzenkethi do play a role in Rough Beasts of Empire along with the Romulans.

    Well, the Typhon Pact books were developed and outlined under Margaret, so the choices of how many books to have and which species to focus on were hers, not Jaime's.
     
  2. William Leisner

    William Leisner Scribbler Rear Admiral

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    Re: Typhon Pact: Seize The Fire review thread

    You understand it was under Margaret's editorship that this choice was made, and Jaime had nothing whatsoever to do with it, right?
     
  3. Enterprise1981

    Enterprise1981 Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Re: Typhon Pact: Seize The Fire review thread

    The Tzenkethi will be featured in Rough Beasts. I'm sure hoping that novel reveals what a Tzenkethi looks like, as with the Breen, especially after no clues were given in the first novel of the Terok Nor trilogy.
     
  4. kkozoriz1

    kkozoriz1 Fleet Captain

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    Re: Typhon Pact: Seize The Fire review thread

    I ended up with a surprise yesterday as my wife got me Zero Sum Game and Seize the Fire. Just up to Basier's reunion with Ezri in ZSG so not much to go on there yet. I'm a little concerned about the reviews of StF since I haven't enjoyed Martin's solo work as much as his work with Andy. The fact that he's written Titan, my second favourite series right now (after Vanguard) and I wonder if I'll be picking up future Titan or Matin books.
     
  5. Thrawn

    Thrawn Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Re: Typhon Pact: Seize The Fire review thread

    Didn't Margaret finish up editorial work on the Typhon Pact books freelance? I remember reading that somewhere.
     
  6. neogothboy74

    neogothboy74 Commander Red Shirt

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    Re: Typhon Pact: Seize The Fire review thread

    Well, I see I'm not alone in my disappointment here. This is easily my least favorite Titan book. I used to love the majority of the Mangels / Martin books (there was 1 I didn't enjoy out of the bunch that they wrote and it was something of a fluke). This is the first I've read of Martin on his own as I've not gotten around to reading Romulan War yet. I've heard from friends that it was ok but not as good as the previous books in the series. This book though...there's just no...magic. I don't know how to describe it, but their previous books were fun and continuity packed awesomeness...and this was the absolue opposite of that. Not that there wasn't continuity...but it wasn't fun to read. I wish the authors would team up again because IMO they did great things together. Whatever happened to pull them apart is a shame.
     
  7. JoeZhang

    JoeZhang Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Re: Typhon Pact: Seize The Fire review thread

    Same here - I got to about 150ish and thought "I'm not enjoying this in the slightest, why bother?" I'm currently reading Old Man's War and that is enjoyable.
     
  8. mickmike

    mickmike Commander Red Shirt

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    Re: Typhon Pact: Seize The Fire review thread

    Put me down as another who is seriously struggling with this book. Seize the fire has been seriously tough going. I'm up to chapter 14 and whilst attempting to read said chapter twice i have decided to give up. The book is pretty labored and just feels like a damn chore to read. Seize the fire has an awesome concept with craptacular execution.
     
    Last edited: Dec 6, 2010
  9. Defcon

    Defcon Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Re: Typhon Pact: Seize The Fire review thread

    In my interview with him Michael A. Martin said that she was editing Seize the Fire, I don't know if she worked on the others, too.
     
  10. nickyboy

    nickyboy Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Re: Typhon Pact: Seize The Fire review thread

    About 130 pages in, it is ok so far
     
  11. Technobuilder

    Technobuilder Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Re: Typhon Pact: Seize The Fire review thread

    Well that's good to know, I guess.

    I wasn't trying to single out Jaime for any particular reason, I was just expressing how much I miss Marco & Margaret. I tried to avoid sounding like I was bashing her, but it looks like I failed.

    Again, I've got to do a better job about separating my thoughts. I was disapointed to learn that Typhon Pact had been reduced from six books to four AND was also expressing sentiment for the "Good Ol' Days" or whatever you want to call it. No aspersions were intended.
     
  12. Keptin J D Reed

    Keptin J D Reed Lieutenant Junior Grade Red Shirt

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    Re: Typhon Pact: Seize The Fire review thread


    Same again for me. Have managed to finish the book as I've been on nights for most of the last week, just babysitting a radar system, so haven't had anything to do but read it, but it was indeed a struggle. Found myself keep putting it down and playing on the internet, whereas most books I read from cover to cover pretty much in one go. Old mans war books were fantastic. Enjoy.
     
  13. Count Zero

    Count Zero Welcome to the Danger Zone! Moderator

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    Re: Typhon Pact: Seize The Fire review thread

    I thought it was ok but not great and not a page turner. The concepts regarding the structure of Gorn society were interesting and I really liked the biotech of the Hranrar.
    What didn't really work for me was the 'madmen as villains' aspect of the story, especially since usually there's method in madness and Gogressh's u-turn on what he thought he needed to do to make his mad vision true didn't make any sense in light of that. I didn't understand Riker's many turnarounds on what to do, either, especially the destruction of the ecosculptor after it had promised to be benevolent towards the Hranrarii.
     
  14. elaithin

    elaithin Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Re: Typhon Pact: Seize The Fire review thread

    I hate to admit it, but this was the first Titan book I've actually disliked. And I enjoyed Mr. Martin's work every time previously, whether it was with Mr. Mangels or not. Honestly - the book feels like it was only half written. I don't know if Mr. Martin began it with his (former, apparently) writing partner and just finished it solo or what, but there's so much that's just not there. There are number of potentially important and interesting events that simply happen 'offscreen', and for the life of me I can't figure out why. Tuvok aboard the ecosculptor, Riker about the Gorn flagship at the end... a number of scenes like this really contribute to the feeling of only having read half a book.

    Another big problem was the characterization, in both actions and dialog. Certain characters seemed very off - neither Xin nor Dakal felt.. 'right'. Many of the familiar Titan characters don't appear at all, and some only get a few generic lines. (On the other hand, Sariel Raeger seemed to get more lines than she ever has before.) Troi seemed to have reverted to her season one TNG persona. Vale felt like a cheap Tasha Yar knockoff instead of the character she's always come across as. And Riker... I'm not even sure I know where to start. Most of his decisions seem completely absent any sort logic or reason to them. When he went to Gog'resssh's ship, there seemed to be no justification for it, or even purpose to it.

    And then there's the so-called Prime Directive concerns raised here. This is exactly why I hate the Prime Directive. It's a stupidly arbitrary and asinine law, and I can't believe Riker would be so concerned about it in the face of saving a world from being destroyed by the Gorn. They're an alien, aggressor species, not a natural disaster. Starfleet can't go giving younger races advanced technology, okay, I get that. Starfleet can't go around just repairing planets and unobstrusively averting natural disasters like meteor impaces... okay. Stupid, (really, really stupid) but okay. I guess.

    Starfleet can't stop a hostile foreign power from using an alien device to wipe out the biosphere of an entire planet? Why the hell not? Where's the interference? I don't get it, and plots like this make me wish for a throway line in the next Star Trek movie where Kirk says "I'm sure glad they did away with General Order One. That whole Prime Directive bit was nonsense."
     
  15. Count Zero

    Count Zero Welcome to the Danger Zone! Moderator

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    Re: Typhon Pact: Seize The Fire review thread

    I had similar thoughts regarding the use of the Prime Directive in this book. I'm not in the camp of those who think the Prime Directive is stupid. I think in essence, it's a very good idea and I can even see why they wouldn't prevent meteor strikes - if someone had prevented the meteor strike that supposedly led to the extinction of the dinosaurs, there's no telling how the evolution of life on earth would have continued. It's similar to the problem Phlox and Cpt. Archer faced in Dear Doctor, I guess. Now, there are cases where it becomes borderline but in this case it seemed pretty clear that the Prime Directive shouldn't apply because it's another race destroying the planet. Isn't this one of the things the Federation and Starfleet is supposed to do? Watch out for those who can't and protect less developed peoples?

    Maybe the Federation subscribes to the idea of 'macro evolution' as mentioned in the Pandora's Star/Judas Unchained duology by Hamilton where the Silfen, an elf-like race, say they won't interfere on humanity's behalf because their idea of evolution also includes more advanced species eradicating lesser ones. If you look at the development of wild life on earth ever since humanity grew large they sort of have a point that it's part of evolution, I suppose. But I think we can all agree that it shouldn't be like that. And we see Starfleet doing the opposite a number of times, especially in TOS.
     
  16. Enterprise1981

    Enterprise1981 Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Re: Typhon Pact: Seize The Fire review thread

    I haven't read that many novels featuring the Titan crew, so I have no real point of comparison. I don't know what it is about Martin's writing style that makes some of his stories hard to get into even if the story premise is appealing. ("The Good That Men Do" has been on my bookshelf collecting for two years.) ;)

    I don't why the Prime Directive would even be an issue when preventing the Gorn from committing genocide. That's part that always seems so idiotic. I would think the powers that be would have more of a realpolitik mindset when it comes to dealing with the Gorn and technology they had dibs on. The prologue make you feel bad for the Gorn's predicament. But in this post-Dominion War, post-Borg invasion, there's no such thing as "implied dibs."
     
  17. Andy Mangels

    Andy Mangels Writer Red Shirt

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    Re: Typhon Pact: Seize The Fire review thread


    I can guarantee you that I had absolutely NOTHING to do with plotting or characterization in this book or ANY of Mike's solo books.

    Reviews of previous collaborations that have singled out characterization have spoken of many scenes which I wrote. I consider characterization one of my strong suits, along with action and conflict scenes.

    World-building and Trek politics are one of my weaker areas, which is why Mike handled many of those scenes, as he is very strong in those areas.
     
  18. ares93

    ares93 Commodore Commodore

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    Re: Typhon Pact: Seize The Fire review thread

    ^ That's why you two made such a splendid team.
     
  19. kkozoriz1

    kkozoriz1 Fleet Captain

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    Re: Typhon Pact: Seize The Fire review thread

    Given that e now have Mike and Andy writing solo I'd take Andy with characterization over world building any day. In a perfect world we'd have both but characterization is core. Good world building is awesome but without people to populate it it's just stage decoration.

    Come back Andy!
     
  20. Technobuilder

    Technobuilder Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Re: Typhon Pact: Seize The Fire review thread

    ^I'm suddenly flashing back to Inception, which I just saw for the first time last night.

    And about Seize the Fire, are their any Typhon Pact elements of note that contribute to the larger story of the four novels or can I skip this novel without suffering much of a lack of information? I hate to skip a Titan novel, but this one seems to be sub-par, and if they characterizations are off I'd rather just not read it to save myself from another Before Dishonor sort of feeling.

    That said, I'm looking forward to the next entry Rough Beasts of Empire with an oddly nostalgic sense of "DS9-R anticipation" I haven't felt in years.
     
    Last edited: Dec 10, 2010

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