*waving* Hiya, new to the board and recently rediscovering my love of Star Trek, specifically TNG. So please excuse a topic on what must be old news to most of you. Anyways, I've recently been working my way back into Trek fandom and remembering how I used to inhale the novels as a kid, I got my hands on the "A Time To..." series and have been reading those. I'm only up to "A Time to Hate", but find myself thoroughly enjoying them. To put things a bit in context, for years, my only exposure to Star Trek were the movies, which I made sure to catch. And while I don't seem to hate the last efforts as some do from what I gather from this board, I did end up being rather disappointed by NEM - albeit it had redeeming moments. Moments aren't enough to sustain a movie, though. Reading the "A Time To..." series, I must say it was a wonderful idea to provide a bridge between the two movies and it actually made me appreciate NEM more the way it set things up and explains what happened in the interlude between the movies. Anyone else have that experience? As I remember from my reading novels years ago, they tend to be hit or miss. And the plot idea with the phantom ship does seem a bit far-fetched to explain Picard's fall from grace when it comes to Starfleet. Not the idea in itself, but how it was handled the way Starfleet dealt with it. Nevertheless, I feel the novels really set things up well, especially when it comes to the overall feel of change and moving on that NEM seemed to have had - especially considering the characters of Riker and Crusher. I was especially glad to see Riker get some hefty story lines, as I felt he's been neglected in the movies. So, kudos to the writers of the series, even though I'm not done with it, yet. But it did make me see NEM with different and less critical eyes.