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. elaithin

    elaithin Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Re: Typhon Pact: Seize The Fire review thread

    Fair enough - I didn't think you'd simply pulled out of the novel halfway through or anything. Granted, I don't really know you, but you don't strike me as the type.

    No, to me, the book just really feels your lack, as though Mr. Martin was just.... expecting the other half of the story to come from somewhere else. I don't know. It's all very odd trying to get through it.
     
  2. Ronald Held

    Ronald Held Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Re: Typhon Pact: Seize The Fire review thread

    Just started reading the book. Seems slow going.
     
  3. nickyboy

    nickyboy Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    Re: Typhon Pact: Seize The Fire review thread

    Agreed
     
  4. kaysea

    kaysea Ensign Red Shirt

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    Re: Typhon Pact: Seize The Fire review thread

    Finished reading it and I gave it an ok rating. Good books make you want to read more ... this book didn't. Took me a few tries of picking it up and putting it down to finish it and felt more like a chore to finish. Like others I felt like a good opportunity was wasted with not depicting the Tuvok/ecosulptor and Riker/Karasrr scene. Other than that i have no other problems with this novel as a standalone book.

    I do however, have a problem with the overall trend of these "Typhon Pact" novels. I was expecting a continuation of Zero Sum Game but Seize the Fire had next to nothing to do with it. in fact the Typhon Pact had very very little to do with Seize the Fire. Remove the words Typhon Pact from the novel, replace it with Gorn fleet and you instantly have a Titan standalone novel with little to no change in plot. The books appear to be episodic each featuring a specific Typhon Pact member and the Federation, which I feel is a terrible move. The writers should have gotten together and wrote an overall story arch spanning the entire Typhon Pact novels ... perhaps maybe something similar to its predecessor, the destiny novels, that drew us into wanting to read more on this Star trek universe.

    I am disappointed. I had so much hope for these set of novels. ... I'll take it all back if the upcoming novels tie these books together :lol:
     
  5. JD

    JD Admiral Admiral

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    Re: Typhon Pact: Seize The Fire review thread

    Yeah, the authors have made it very clear from the beginning that these would all be standalone stories. Actually this is pretty much how most of the Trek Lit crossovers work out, as far as I know Destiny was the first big multi-series crossover were they crews all interacted. The closest we got before this was one scene in each of the Gateways books were the Captains all attended the same meeting via the holodeck.
     
  6. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    Re: Typhon Pact: Seize The Fire review thread

    Yeah, the idea wasn't to do another big crossover epic; that would be redundant. The idea was to let each series continue on its own but show how the various casts of characters were affected by the existence of the Typhon Pact. The Pact isn't a singular event, it's the new astropolitical status quo from now on, and the idea is to examine the various facets of that new status quo, as well as to give spotlights to alien cultures that have been underexplored.
     
  7. kaysea

    kaysea Ensign Red Shirt

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    Re: Typhon Pact: Seize The Fire review thread

    well F*** ... I dislike the novels that don't really impact the universe. At the end there's always the sense of no real progression leaving me wondering why I just spent hours reading a book that went nowhere. Which is why I loved Destiny so much, 'cause it changed everything. Ugh, I guess more Star Trek pulp it is ...
     
  8. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    Re: Typhon Pact: Seize The Fire review thread

    ^Well, you can't have a story that changes everything all the time; it would be unrealistic and repetitive. Besides, what's the point of having a progression if it doesn't have consequences? Progression isn't just about the events that cause change, it's about the aftermath of the change. Isn't a story that explores the long-term impact of a massive change at least as important as the story that depicts the change itself? Isn't the story depicting the change pointless if you never examine its consequences, if you just hurry forward to the next huge change that renders the last huge change moot?

    I know that when I was reading Spider-Man comics regularly in the last few years before the Brand New Day reboot, I got sick of the constant Marvel-mandated Huge Events that changed everything every 12-18 issues. Since the storylines tended to be about 6 issues apiece, that meant that a new status quo barely had time to get established before another major change happened that either mooted, reversed, or ignored the previous major change. And so the changes had no real, lasting impact and it all felt kind of pointless. It was just a progression of desperate sales-grabbing gimmicks rather than a satisfactorily evolving narrative.

    So depicting changes isn't enough. You have to take the time to show what those changes mean, to explore how they affect people's lives and the world they live in. You said you want to see stories that have impact on the universe, but doesn't that mean it's important to explore what that impact is? Destiny and A Singular Destiny depicted the biggest change in status quo in the history of Trek literature, but it means nothing if we don't actually see the effects of that change. And that's what Typhon Pact is all about.
     
  9. JD

    JD Admiral Admiral

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    Re: Typhon Pact: Seize The Fire review thread

    Can't you just enjoy a good story even if it isn't some huge event that totally changes the universe? To me some of the best stories are the small ones that only impact a few characters.
     
  10. JoeZhang

    JoeZhang Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Re: Typhon Pact: Seize The Fire review thread

    Well this is the worst of all worlds then because it wasn't actually very good.
     
  11. TerraUnam

    TerraUnam Commander Red Shirt

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    Re: Typhon Pact: Seize The Fire review thread

    I like Martin more than most, but I too feel his characterization could use work.

    I was a bit disappointed that the species behind the Terraforming device was never identified and the scene where we could have established that (Tuvok's mind meld) didn't materialize.

    The taunt of having Tuvok and White/Blue remember knowledge from the device is interesting but is just seems like trying to dangle a thread for another book and not being subtle about it.

    The references to ENT-era Trek events, particularly ones from the next novel or to-be-written storyline were amusing.

    Vale's jibes about the too-pacifistic Hranrarii cast my mind back to Lost Souls as this seemed the kind civilization the Caeliar are searching for in the latest iteration of their Great Work.
     
  12. Wally

    Wally Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    Re: Typhon Pact: Seize The Fire review thread

    I'm feeling myself take the opposite stance at this point. The current Trek Lit universe has changed so much over the last few years. New ships, characters, politics. It is almost unrecognizable to someone just jumping in from watching the TV shows. There have been so many wars, and universe spanning crises- promotions, and deaths- that its a little difficult to keep track of. Memory Beta is a huge resource for me.
    I much prefer at this point in time, for (mostly) self-contained stories without constant massive universe/character redefining moments. At least for awhile.
     
  13. kaysea

    kaysea Ensign Red Shirt

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    Re: Typhon Pact: Seize The Fire review thread

    To each his own I guess.

    I understand having to cover the consequences but really is it necessary to have 4(?) typhon pact books to just cover the consequences of the destiny novels?, which seize the fire did not even remotely cover. One book could have fulfilled that criteria.

    Perhaps I was just hoping for more. The Destiny novels plot was great in comparison to the hundreds of other star trek novels out there and it appears that the sequels (or at least the current ones) will just be another set of books amidst the hundreds of other Trek books.

    Its a shame 'cause I'm a huge trek fan and mediocre trek books in comparison to other sci-fi novels are great in my eyes and the Destiny novels and its sequels had such great potential. Like the old saying quality over quantity , I would very much prefer a set of great novels than have hundreds of mediocre to sub-par Trek novels anyday. I will bluntly say the reason for this is cause these trek authors are merely in it for the money than for the love of Star trek or the love of creating a great sci-fi novel.
     
    Last edited: Dec 11, 2010
  14. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    Re: Typhon Pact: Seize The Fire review thread

    Okay, let me say this again: The existence of the Typhon Pact is not an isolated event. It is the new permanent status quo of the books. The Pact is going to be an ongoing factor in all the series set in or near Federation space -- not in every single book, but on a continuing basis, like the role that the Klingons or Romulans or Cardassians have played in the past. It's not a one-book kind of thing.


    But if every book were like Destiny, then wouldn't Destiny "just be another set of books"?

    Besides, don't assume that the entire tetralogy will be like Seize the Fire. As a Titan novel, it stands to reason that it's telling an episodic story that's detached from the main thrust of things in the vicinity of the Federation. It would be unwise to expect the same from the upcoming books that deal with DS9 and TNG characters dealing with neighbors such as the Romulans, Tzenkethi, and Tholians.


    That's bull. Of course we do this for pay because we need to feed ourselves and have places to live. But if we didn't love Star Trek, we'd probably be doing much more lucrative jobs than this. The money just isn't enough to be a great incentive for this by itself. Writing Trek fiction is very much a labor of love for me and for every other Trek novelist I know.
     
  15. Smiley

    Smiley Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Re: Typhon Pact: Seize The Fire review thread

    The premise of Seize the Fire is an interesting one, and I was totally involved for the first 150-200 pages. At that point, the storytelling seemed to revert to the worst cookie-cutter peril tendencies of some of the numbered novels. There was very little that was distinctive and took advantage of the chance to get to know the Gorn and Titan crew better.

    I agree with many of the criticisms leveled in this thread so far. I expected to see more of Tuvok's past experience with the Genesis aftermath. Character motivations were also spotty, especially the ones behind Riker's trips to the Gorn vessels.

    The length was quite excessive for me, and I say that as someone who enjoyed the first Romulan War novel. I read the last 200 pages more out of an interest in what would become of the Titan characters than out of interest in the story itself.

    I voted this one as average. It had the potential to be excellent, which makes the final result even more disappointing.
     
  16. JD

    JD Admiral Admiral

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    Re: Typhon Pact: Seize The Fire review thread

    Yeah, but then we wouldn't have been able to get anywhere near as deep into these cultures and their interactions with the crews. The whole point of the series was to give us a chance to get a more in depth look at the cultures that join the TP and how they effect the crews we know. And I am sorry, but that is way too complex of a topic to be covered satisfactorily in just one book.
    Oh so now you're just going to get insulting, real nice. Just because they decide to take things in a different direction than you like doesn't mean they don't care, it just means (oh my god what a shock) they don't see things the way you do. As shocking and hard as it may be for you to believe they don't write the books just for you. Trust me, I've been hanging out on these boards for 5 or 6 years now, and I can assure you that all of the authors love Trek just as much as the rest of us, if not more.
     
  17. kaysea

    kaysea Ensign Red Shirt

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    Re: Typhon Pact: Seize The Fire review thread

    lol, ok it was insulting. I wanted to get under the writers skin,especially those that read these board in order to goad them into putting more effort into these trek novels. Ok, its not the best way to encourage but whatever helps in creating better quality trek lit. So ...

    (to the Trek lit writers & their future novels) Show me and everyone else if you can create a Trek novel worthy of a Hugo or Nebula award ... or are you just another pulp fiction writer working on your 40th novel?
     
  18. Sci

    Sci Admiral Admiral

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    Re: Typhon Pact: Seize The Fire review thread

    ... I beg your pardon, but how could you possibly think that someone who takes months and months out of his life to write an entire novel could possibly not be putting effort into that book?

    I mean, hell, it took me a month and a half to research and write a 30-page college paper about factual events. I can't even imagine how difficult plotting out and writing a fiction novel must be.

    Why, exactly, do they have to justify any damn thing to you? I mean, I'm sorry, but who the hell are you?

    There are a lot of Star Trek novels. Some are better than others. Some are experimenting and succeed; some are experimenting and fail. But to try to claim that a given Trek novel is somehow inferior just because it isn't doing a Great Big Epic Crossover like Destiny is just silly. That's not the only kind of story worth telling.

    I mean, the universe isn't fundamentally shaken by the events of Articles of the Federation, but that's easily one of the greatest Star Trek novels out there. The Never-Ending Sacrifice is just the life story of one guy living on Cardassia, but it's an absolutely amazing novel. Etc.

    And I should think that the work being done in Typhon Pact -- exploring, in-depth, alien cultures as they undergo fundamental socio-political changes -- would almost certainly be regarded as in the best tradition of Hugo- and Nebula-award winning science fiction novels.
     
  19. JD

    JD Admiral Admiral

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    Re: Typhon Pact: Seize The Fire review thread

    You're really not making yourself look any better here. Like sci said, it's pretty obvious that they are putting effort into the books. You really need to keep in mind that they're writting these for everyone, not just you. So sometimes they might not do exactly what you want to them do. It doesn't mean they're not trying, it just means they're taking things in a different direction than what you want. And as much as you may hate it, different isn't always a bad thing.
     
  20. Steve Roby

    Steve Roby Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Re: Typhon Pact: Seize The Fire review thread

    So, ignoring the troll (and if admitting to insulting regulars here and passing it off with a lol isn't trolling, what is?)...

    This was a frustrating book. It took forever to get moving; I was nearly halfway through it before it actually got me interested, and the payoff never really came. For instance, at one point there's a page or so from one particular POV that never gets revisited, even when it really should. It seems to be there mainly to explain what otherwise would seem arbitrary.

    Dunno whether the book needed some Andy or some Marco or both, but something was definitely missing.