Spoilers PIC: The Dark Veil by James Swallow - Review Thread

Discussion in 'Trek Literature' started by Jinn, Jan 5, 2021.

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Rate The Dark Veil

  1. Outstanding

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    50.0%
  2. Above Average

    13 vote(s)
    50.0%
  3. Average

    0 vote(s)
    0.0%
  4. Below Average

    0 vote(s)
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  5. Poor

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    0.0%
  1. Damian

    Damian Commodore Commodore

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    I believe there may have been a reference to that somewhere, that maybe he was a descendent of the Commander or something hinted at maybe.
     
  2. David cgc

    David cgc Admiral Premium Member

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    He attributes the saying about being "creatures of duty" to an ancestor, IIRC.
     
  3. Damian

    Damian Commodore Commodore

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    Yeah, that was it. I knew there was something that reminded me of the Commander from "Balance of Terror."

    Maybe James Swallow will let us know if the intent was for them to be one and the same (though I imagine he wouldn't have included that little bit if that wasn't the intent--sometimes it's safe to assume ;) ).
     
  4. James Swallow

    James Swallow Writer Captain

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    Yeah, the deliberate intention there is to suggest that Medaka is related in some way to Mark Lenard's character from "Balance of Terror".

    I wanted to highlight the two familiar poles of Romulan characters from Trek in the novel - so Medaka embodies the 'honourable adversary' while Helek is the 'zealous schemer'.
     
  5. hbquikcomjamesl

    hbquikcomjamesl Commodore Commodore

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    I gave it one of my vanishingly-rare "Outstanding" votes. Not that it was without faults; I thought the "Helek" scenes went on a bit long. But the story kept me engaged, and was full of surprises.
    the Jazari turning out to be the Androids of the Planet Mudd,
    along with the "Balance of Terror" and Star Trek: Insurrection references, as well as the "Macha Hernandez" Easter egg. And while there was an invocation of the "eye-scream" trope, it was mercifully short on both length and gory detail.

    The incident referred to in the "chapter Picard had just finished" in the history book he was writing didn't ring any bells with me. Should it have?

    And I seem to have entirely missed the Gurney Halleck reference. Then again, after I got as far as God Emperor of Dune, I gave up, and consigned all my Frank Herbert to the used book dealer, and never saw more than a few minutes of any of the screen adaptations of Dune.

    As to the Zhat Vash, late last night, it occurred to me that their genesis might have had something to do with ancient contact with either the Borg, or the Exo III androids, or both. But perhaps we'll get a canonical explanation (as it is, thanks to my annual Lenten reading of the entire KJV, and various electrical projects around the house, I'm still only a little over halfway through the first season of Picard).
     
    Last edited: Apr 8, 2021
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  6. Damian

    Damian Commodore Commodore

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    I believe that's what Picard was working on at the beginning of the show when the news service was doing their interview.

    You know, too, somehow I missed what's in your spoiler. Not sure why I didn't add that up because now that you mention it, it was totally obvious. It just totally went over my head--and I caught the reference about the Romulan commander. :shrug:
     
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  7. hbquikcomjamesl

    hbquikcomjamesl Commodore Commodore

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    Either that, or go up in a big soggy explosion (in which case innocent bystanders might be hurt).
     
  8. James Swallow

    James Swallow Writer Captain

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    He's writing about the Station Salem One attack, which is mentioned in the TNG episode "The Enemy" as an incident on par with Pearl Harbour during WW2.

    I'd hope not, for his editor's sake! ST: Picard takes place over a decade after the events of The Dark Veil - that'd be a long, long deadline...!

    It's one of Patrick Stewart's lines from the 1984 Dune movie.
     
  9. hbquikcomjamesl

    hbquikcomjamesl Commodore Commodore

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    I gathered it had something to do with that. The few minutes I've seen of it are more than the combined total of what little I've seen of all other screen adaptations. I could never really get into Dune: its milieu always struck me as not so much a moral inversion as a moral eversion: completely inside out.
     
  10. Damian

    Damian Commodore Commodore

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    Yeah, I guess that's true enough. :wtf:

    Though I suppose it's possible he started writing it that early and got a publisher lined up later down the road. Sometimes it takes someone a long time to write a book :shrug:
     
  11. James Swallow

    James Swallow Writer Captain

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  12. thribs

    thribs Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Just finished it. it was pretty good. Certainly better than that other Picard novel. They actually felt like their characters here. Some very interesting JJVerse references in this; from Red Matter, the design of the Tal Shiar ships and even the stuff mentioned from Spock. Would be interesting to see the new version of Countdown for this timeline.
    I liked how he tried to make sense of what they did with Thad in Picard with that bizarre illness he had that needed an android brain to cure him. Him being cured by the Jazuri which would lead to complications later on in life makes it a bit more believable. He needed a "touch up" so to speak which wasn't available and the parents didn't seem to care that much from finding another.
    Wasn't the biggest fan of the Zhat Vash. That whole concept was just poorly executed in Picard and it just brought the story down.

    Interesting seeing what they kept the same from the Prime novelverse to this. Vale and Keru is still around but the rest are all different. The one that makes me upset was Doctor Ree being replaced. I thought with him being reptilian like the Jazuri would have made some nice interactions between them.
     
  13. David cgc

    David cgc Admiral Premium Member

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    I was watching a livestream for a podcast I listen to recently ("Space the Nation," a politics-focused sci-fi discussion show that used to be the second iteration of "The Churn," SyFy's house podcast for "The Expanse"), and at one point they mentioned they were planning to do an episode on the Dune movie, and I thought they meant this one and not the new one, and we all had a fun moment of confusion where they didn't understand when I asked in the chat if they were going to talk about all the pugs.
     
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  14. Tuskin38

    Tuskin38 Admiral Admiral

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    They did care, but they had no way to do it.

    Also 'and the parents'. What kind of way is that to refer to Troi and Riker?
     
  15. thribs

    thribs Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Well they didn’t try hard enough considering how littered the galaxy is with androids. :)
     
  16. F. King Daniel

    F. King Daniel Fleet Admiral Admiral

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    *flashbacks to DS9 where Odo was suddenly the only shapeshifter...:rolleyes:*