Spoilers Star Trek - Picard: The Last Best Hope by Una McCormack Review Thread

Discussion in 'Trek Literature' started by Kilana2, Feb 2, 2020.

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Rate Star Trek - Picard: The Last Best Hope

  1. Outstanding

    33 vote(s)
    39.3%
  2. Above Average

    39 vote(s)
    46.4%
  3. Average

    9 vote(s)
    10.7%
  4. Below Average

    2 vote(s)
    2.4%
  5. Poor

    1 vote(s)
    1.2%
  1. youngtrek

    youngtrek Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    Here’s a site with Deep Space Nine and Voyager ratings. This link takes you to the final season ratings for Deep Space Nine, and there are links at the bottom of the page to the other seasons of DS9 and also to Voyager. Looks to me like DS9 was averaging in the four million viewers range its final season, and that Voyager started out higher and maintained at least a bit of an edge until it’s own final two or three seasons (well after Deep Space Nine had gone off the air) by which point it too was averaging in the four million viewers range.

    http://users.telenet.be/WebTrek/Ds9/Ratings/ratings7.html
     
  2. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    This is all true, except for the bit about VGR being on prime time "everywhere." UPN was a new, pretty small network compared to the other four that then existed, and it was carried in a finite number of markets. In cities that didn't have UPN affiliates, VGR was offered for syndication along with DS9, and would thus air on various different days and time slots. So what you say is correct, but not to quite the same extent as if it had been on a bigger network like NBC or FOX.
     
  3. youngtrek

    youngtrek Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    Yes, thanks. After I posted that I found an article talking about how bad a network the UPN was at the time and that the effects of that could be seen in Voyager’s ratings.
     
  4. Koric

    Koric Commander Red Shirt

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    I didn’t know if this should be posted here or another thread where I had contact with Dr. Una McCormack.

    So forgive me while I post this twice since this concerns Picard: Last Best Hope and my initial review of the book back in February 2020.

    My review on Amazon was pulled and deleted by Amazon for being too specific as to the SHUCKS AND FUDGES in the book, and since it was in the first 24 hours of the ebook being released, I was trying to be as vague and unspoilerific as possible. I will continue to support Trek writers by purchasing ebooks, but I WILL NEVER review anything again, much less on Amazon. I have better things to do that waste my time to have someone arbitrarily complain and delete by review after 18 months in September 2021. 210 people thought it was helpful and I believed I was doing the right thing by letting Trek readers know what they were getting into. It was dirty, rotten, and unfair..

    Either way I was glad to set the record straight and talk to Dr. McCormack about her choices with the book. I thought the matter was finished and settled, until this had happened. I wanted to share this with others on the forum because I felt it was important.
    -Koric
     
  5. Charles Phipps

    Charles Phipps Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Speaking as an author, I truly appreciate what you've done as leaving a review helps us all. I also hate Amazon's constant deletion of reviews.

    Its why I "save" everything but cut and pasting mine to Goodreads as well.
     
    Koric likes this.
  6. Koric

    Koric Commander Red Shirt

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    Thank you so very much @Charles Phipps

    In fairness and in full disclosure please keep in mind that I purchased the book the night of at MIDNIGHT and tried to keep reading 30 mins to an hour into the ebook on my kindle.

    I just couldn't stay with the book or the story, it was the equivalent of trying to listen to an old record, and the minute you start to enjoy the music, you hear the scratch or skip. So I stopped reading and wrote my review on Amazon.

    As I said, my intention was not to hurt or disparage sales, but just to inform others who were purchasing the book,

    It took me 2 to 3 tries, to submit the review. But after it was submitted this review stayed posted from 2/2020 until the first week of September 2021. 18 months 1,936 reviews at the time. My review had 210 helpful votes. At one stage that was 10 percent of every review posted.

    Coincidentally or conveniently, it was DELETED completely from the Amazon page right BEFORE the 55th Anniversary of Star Trek celebration. I used to be able to pull up the review by Google or any search means by typing "Star Trek Picard Last Best Hope ebook review.

    You could see the first line of my review on the search results.

    The whole thing is gone. Erased from existence. No reference or mention anywhere. Please keep it in mind, it is one thing to refute or delete a review. It is another thing wipe it out of the internet as if it never existed.

    I don't understand why this was done and for what reason. I know I'm not special at all. I don't care to be. At first I wanted to know and understand Dr. @Una McCormack prose choices and why. She was kind enough to explain in detail as well as the other Trek writers @Christopher @Greg Cox @James Swallow @Dayton Ward etc etc.

    I understood and respected their viewpoints and opinions. The same with Dr. @Una McCormack 's as well. This was at least 3 months in July 2021.

    This was NEVER meant to be an attack on Dr. @Una McCormack or an attempt at censorship of any kind. My intention was to just write a quasi review and just INFORM other Trek readers and buyers of the book about what,I had experienced.

    I am NOT seeking to CENSOR a book or writer...
    I am NOT seeking to HARM OR HAMPER sales of the book
    NOR am I seeking to harass anyone at all

    If anything I just want to see what the other Trek writers think of this white washing of reviews. Not just me, but others.

    Honestly I am SURPRISED at their SILENCE in this. I HAVE NOTHING BUT THE UTMOST RESPECT FOR THE TREK WRITERS ON HERE. i just hoped they would have chimed in and said something about this. Good or bad, right or wrong? Anything? I don't want to seem off my rocker talking about this.

    To be honest, I sat quiet about this for 6 months trying to be calm and forget about it. But, I truly just don't get or understand what happened and why. Amazon told me that it was about the language in my review writing S--T and F--K specifically, but I only mentioned the words that were printed in the boo already, and that I didn't stick to specifics when reviewing the book. How could I? This was 24 hours into the release of the book. I had no intention of being
    specific about the story and end up spoiling the book. But, I was specific as to the impact of the prose on myself.

    Remember all of this was happening at the beginning of COVID. All I truly wanted to do was read and enjoy the story and be entertained. To get away from my troubles and the troubles of the world. Not to be shoved into some controversy or go through all of this. I gave Dr. @Una McCormack a FIVE STAR Review, and said that what I read of the story was excellent, and I felt that the story and the language were two separate issues, and I felt it was unnecessary to penalize Dr. McCormack at all. Because in my mind, you could delete every world of the language out of the book and have it have zero impact on the story at large.

    There are other reviews which SLIGHTLY mention the language in non specific terms, but no one was as specific as I was. Amazon emailed me to warn me not to violate their TOS, which I had no intention to, and that if my review passed muster, it could be resubmitted, and re-entered. I realized it would be resubmitted and posted to the current day and time, and impact would be lost.

    I am completely turned off by the whole thing. I will continue to purchase Trek ebooks, support the writers in any way possible. But I will not waste my time writing a review, when it makes someone else money. Or it can be so casually and flippantly deleted, or worse whitewashed from the internet completely. An author owes me nothing for my purchase, but I would hope I earned their respect and support in the end.

    Sorry for the long post. Any opinions or insights welcomed.
    -Koric
     
    Last edited: Feb 3, 2022
  7. Paul Weaver

    Paul Weaver Rear Admiral Premium Member

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    So Amazon deleted a review? You seem to be taking it very personally. I'm sure it happens all the time. Amazon are hardly known for being the greatest company on the planet, between how they treat their warehouse staff, how they "pay taxes", how they drive out competition, the gig economy of their delivery staff, etc.

    I think someone upthread suggested posting to Goodreads. Did you post it on this thread? Or on your own blog?
     
  8. Una McCormack

    Una McCormack Writer Red Shirt

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    @Koric I responded on the other thread. I'm afraid I don't have time for a lengthy online discussion, not least because my 8yo daughter tested positive for covid last week and is currently away from school. It must be very frustrating to put so much effort into a review and have it deleted. Amazon moves in mysterious ways.
     
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  9. Koric

    Koric Commander Red Shirt

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    Dr @Una McCormack... I am so sorry to hear about your daughter. I hope for a full recovery or no lasting effects. I have Cerebral Palsy and I am fully vaxxed with two shots and a booster to do my part to protect as many as possible.

    I’m sorry I was not looking for a debate at all. As I said before and will do so again, Dr. @Una McCormack I wanted to thank you for your time and other Trek writers as well for their opinions, time and responses. It meant a lot to me. In the end, I just wanted to inform you and other Trek writers of what has happened in my situation as well as Trek readers and fans.

    I am NOT blaming you or anyone, as honestly I do not have enough information to hold ANYONE responsible, i was firm in my review, but still reiterated my conviction that you wrote a great story and was bombarded with criticism for my 5 Star Review. I felt they were two complete separate things. If Amazon pulled my review due to their standards and practices, then their AI to scan and notify about reviews stinks. Especially since the review stood on their page for 18 MONTHS, please keep that in mind,

    Thank you for your comments @Paul Weaver or to anyone who reads this post: this IS NOT about me, and no I do not take it personally. But, if this can happen to me, I believe it can happen to anyone for any reason.

    My opinion or view on any review is this: if I buy anything. I don’t feel obligated in the slightest to leave a review. If anyone spends the time or the effort to review something, you don’t get anything for your efforts. In fact, you either make the writer, or publisher, or venue (Amazon) money, I don’t know which nor do I care. But it is obvious, that there is a direct correlation between reviews and sales. But, as I said SOMEONE be it a person or entity felt threatened in some way by what I wrote. I wished it hadn’t affected me so, But having a disability it takes time and effort in writing anything.

    I just wanted to discuss this in some way, get other perspectives and put it all to bed once and for all. I hope this does not happen to anyone ever again.
    Thanks,
    -Koric
     
  10. Una McCormack

    Una McCormack Writer Red Shirt

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    @Koric Thanks for your kind message. Both my partner and I are double vaxxed and boosted; sadly vaccinations aren't available for under-12s in the UK yet. The schools here have been in crisis since before Xmas (largely unreported). I'm glad to hear you're vaxxed and I hope you stay safe.

    I honestly don't know what might have happened with your review. I sympathise with the feeling of putting a great deal of care and work into something that is then lost. Obviously I personally have no problem with a review accurately representing the contents of my book. But I'm afraid that we can't look to big corporations like Amazon for fair play.
     
  11. 100Pic

    100Pic Lieutenant Red Shirt

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  12. Cake Is Eternal

    Cake Is Eternal Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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  13. Avro Arrow

    Avro Arrow Hey, Earthlings! Stop nuking each other! Moderator

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    Hi @Cake Is Eternal , I have moved this post into our existing review thread for Last Best Hope. We don't really need to start a new thread for a review post when a review thread already exists.
     
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  14. Cake Is Eternal

    Cake Is Eternal Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    Thank you so much! I missed this thread for some reason. I appreciate your taking care of this for me!
     
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  15. 100Pic

    100Pic Lieutenant Red Shirt

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    Excellent review @Cake Is Eternal. I saw a production of Antigone once, but it was a really arty take on it, and I don’t really remember what happened.

    Anyway, I enjoyed your perspective on Picard as the tragic protagonist. Funny, my read of the book was a bit more focused on the failure on a macro level — like, “How did the evacuation of Romulus go so wrong”. But from a more Picard-oriented perspective, it’s clear to see just how these events led to his resignation etc.
     
  16. Charles Phipps

    Charles Phipps Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    I've said it many places that this basically feels like it should have been a two-part pilot for the main series. It would have made everything fall into place.
     
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  17. Elwro

    Elwro Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    True. For me this is the foundation for the series, really.
     
  18. Damian

    Damian Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Yeah I agree. I was glad I read this novel before seeing the show. I probably would have been like WTF during the beginning of the show without the novel. One even that sticks out in my mind is when Raffi meets her son and the cold reception she gets. The novel really helped me understand the reasons for that. There are many other things too, but that was one in particular that stood out for me that I felt better prepared for thanks to this novel.
     
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  19. Charles Phipps

    Charles Phipps Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    Yeah, we start "in media res" which is fine but seeing Picard at the height of his powers and moving refugees by the millions only to have it all fall apart would have had all the more impact. Its sort of like Battlestar Galactica. I don't think the show would have been nearly as impactful without the mini series where we see Caprica nuked.

    It's not that I don't buy Picard sitting in his mansion and sulking like Achilles in his tent but the context works very well for him if we see just how he got there. I also appreciated the Elnor infomration.
     
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  20. Stevil2001

    Stevil2001 Vice Admiral Admiral

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    The problem with starting with Last Best Hope is that the whole Romulan refugee thing ends up being a red herring for a frankly dumb plot about evil space AIs. Last Best Hope just leans into this and makes it even worse that S1 ended so poorly.
     
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