Filling in gaps with the novels

Discussion in 'Trek Literature' started by darth_ender, Aug 26, 2013.

  1. darth_ender

    darth_ender Lieutenant Junior Grade Red Shirt

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    One thing I used to love about Star Wars novels and despise about Star Trek novels was that the Star Wars novels were pretty binding, each book obliged to fit in with the canon established before it. Star Trek, I felt, was just too "non-committal". Well, my feelings have since changed. Now I am sick to death of nearly all Star Wars EU and the lame directions it took the story and characters, and I prefer to stick mostly to the original trilogy, with a little consideration given for other material (including the prequel trilogy), but not much. Meanwhile, I've realized that Star Trek novels are very liberating: if you don't like the story, then it doesn't have to exist to you! As a result, I've finally opened up to them after many years, and I've found I enjoy them. I've only read a few so far, but I hope to greatly expand my view of the Trek universe.

    One thing I really look forward to doing is filling in so many gaps in the stories. We learn so little of Capt. Pike, less of Capt. April, we are missing a second five-year mission for the Enterprise that had only started with TMP, more on the Enterprises -B and -C, etc. I've made a list of books I hope to get around to reading at some point (I've already read a few of them) that flesh out eras like this. I'd love any feedback on any particular part of my list, which books in particular are more worthwhile reads that others. Note that the categories are largely chronological, but the books within the categories are not necessarily.
     
    Last edited: Aug 26, 2013
  2. darth_ender

    darth_ender Lieutenant Junior Grade Red Shirt

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    Charles Rasmussen
    Shakedown (comic)

    Robert April
    Best Destiny
    Final Frontier
    Vulcan's Glory
    Though Hell Should Bar the Way (short story from Enterprise Logs)
    Shadows of the Past (comic)
    Star Trek Early Voyages (several comics)
    The Ends of Eternity (comic)
    Countdown to Darkness

    Christopher Pike
    The Children of Kings (not on Enterprise)
    Star Trek Early Voyages (several comics)
    Crisis on Vulcan
    Vulcan's Glory
    Conflicting Natures (short story from Enterprise Logs)
    Where Sea Meets Sky
    Burning Dreams
    A Private Anecdote
    Legacy
    Burning Dreams
    The Rift
    A Less Perfect Union
    The Children of Kings
    Captain's Log: Pike (comic)

    James T. Kirk
    1st Five year mission
    Enterprise
    James Blish short stories
    Alan Dean Foster short stories
    The Avenger (short story from Enterprise Logs)
    The First Artifact (Will Decker)
    Between missions
    The Lost Years
    A Flag Full of Stars
    Traitor Winds
    Recovery
    Night Whispers (Will Decker) (short story from Enterprise Logs)

    2nd Five year mission
    TMP novelization
    The Final Voyage (comic)
    Ex Machina
    Home is the Hunter
    Deep Domain

    Enterprise as a training ship
    Novelizations: II and III

    Enterprise-A
    Novelizations: IV, V, and VI

    Enterprise-B
    Novelization: Generations
    The Captain's Daughter
    The Lost Era: Serpents among the Ruins

    Enterprise-C
    The Lost Era: Well of Souls
     
  3. RoB

    RoB Lieutenant Junior Grade Red Shirt

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  4. darth_ender

    darth_ender Lieutenant Junior Grade Red Shirt

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    Thank you :)

    I'm sure there are other books I'm missing, but I'm definitely open to expanding my list.

    EDIT: Checking out that other list, I didn't realize there were so many books set that period! I'm glad they expanded on it, as it's disappointing how much empty time was left between TMP and TWOK.
     
  5. JD

    JD Fleet Admiral Admiral

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  6. darth_ender

    darth_ender Lieutenant Junior Grade Red Shirt

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    If the comics are well done, I hold no reservations against them. I'm honestly really interested in the Early Voyages. I'll have to check them out when I get the chance. Thanks for the recommendation :)
     
  7. ryan123450

    ryan123450 Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Just get the Complete Comics Collection.:bolian:
     
  8. TheAlmanac

    TheAlmanac Writer Captain

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    The Rift, by Peter David, contains both a section set during Pike's tenure and a section set aboard the Enterprise-A.
     
  9. darth_ender

    darth_ender Lieutenant Junior Grade Red Shirt

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    I'm very much a noob in the Star Trek literature, and in the past assumed the stories were largely standalones, and mostly could be interpreted as further episodes squeezed between those shown on TV. Now I'm realizing just how much they flesh out the missing spots, considering the sections and links provided (especially ryan's Lit-verse Reading Guide). In some ways, I wonder if I've bitten off more than I can chew. While I am a fairly fast reader, I don't have much time to actually sit down and read, and covering a novel can take around a month. It could be ages before I fill in these gaps as well as I'd like. :(

    How do you like The Rift, Almanac? Learning more about Pike is definitely a goal of mine, since he got so little screen time.

    Since I will probably have to go with the best stories to fill in these gaps initially, and then hopefully fill in the rest later, are there any particular books from the various periods that folks would recommend above the others? The periods I listed above are the periods that most interest me. Though I love the other stuff too, I'm really wanting to expand my view of the TOS time period.
     
  10. captcalhoun

    captcalhoun Admiral Admiral

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    Burning Dreams is awesome. End of.
     
  11. tomswift2002

    tomswift2002 Commodore Commodore

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    I think, even to this day, Diane Carey's portrayal of Captain Robert April in Final Frontier (January 1988 publication date, not to be confused with the 1989 Star Trek V: The Final Frontier) is considered to be the most influential portrayal of the character thus far in Trek. April's been portrayed in different ways in other books, but usually those portrayals have been based on April's appearance in TAS and Final Frontier.
     
  12. darth_ender

    darth_ender Lieutenant Junior Grade Red Shirt

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    Well, that actually is good news, because I just started reading Final Frontier. I like his character (all one chapter of it that I have read). I already have read Best Destiny, also by Diane Carey, and which I'm confident was written after. His character was obviously portrayed similarly, and I really liked him in that. He's a calm, charismatic fellow and I like that.
     
  13. Greg Cox

    Greg Cox Admiral Admiral

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    Indeed. The one and only time I wrote April, for that short story in Enterprise Logs, I followed Diane's lead when it came to April and his crew . . . .
     
  14. Saul

    Saul Vice Admiral Admiral

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    Loved the story. Short, but April was really fleshed out in that. I wouldn't mind seeing him get a full Novel on some of his adventures, a bit like what Pike got with 'Burning Dreams'.
     
  15. NightJim

    NightJim Captain Captain

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    Ha, yeah, me too. I started this year deciding to give New Frontier ago, a series about a completely new crew. That got expanded to everything by Peter David, with the intention of going further after I got through that. Those two goals have more or less merged now, and are practically still expanding.

    I started with 18 books to read. I've already read 10, working on an 11th, and only 6 of those have been New Frontier.
     
  16. Greg Cox

    Greg Cox Admiral Admiral

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    Thanks! I think of that as my "Diane Carey" story since I was basically filling in for her on that assignment . . ..
     
  17. darth_ender

    darth_ender Lieutenant Junior Grade Red Shirt

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    Since I'm new, I have been surprised by how many times this site is graced by Star Trek celebrities. :) Captain April is a fascinating character to me, in part because of his limited screen appearance. I am looking forward to learning more about him.

    NightJim, I've only read one Peter David book, but I really enjoyed it: Vendetta. That was my intro to the Trek Lit-verse actually, and a nice intro at that.
     
  18. Markonian

    Markonian Fleet Admiral Moderator

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    Don't forget that April featured in Countdown to Darkness.

    A couple of months ago I read Early Voyages. Comparing that April with the Final Frontier one, I prefer the friendlier April.
     
  19. NightJim

    NightJim Captain Captain

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    Awesome, that's on my list. Right now I've gone all the way back to Sulu and the Excelsior so Vendetta is a bit away yet.
     
  20. TheAlmanac

    TheAlmanac Writer Captain

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    I quite liked it, though I haven't read it in several years.

    The Pike portion takes place immediately after "The Cage"...like a lot of Pike stories do, unfortunately. :/

    I was really into Peter David's run on the DC TOS comics series at the time this came out, and the Enterprise-A portion would've been concurrent with those events, so it was cool to see a prose version of that.