Spoilers TNG: Before Dishonor by Peter David Review Thread

Discussion in 'Trek Literature' started by Defcon, Aug 31, 2014.

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Rate Before Dishonor

  1. Outstanding

    4 vote(s)
    6.7%
  2. Above Average

    11 vote(s)
    18.3%
  3. Average

    12 vote(s)
    20.0%
  4. Below Average

    12 vote(s)
    20.0%
  5. Poor

    21 vote(s)
    35.0%
  1. Markonian

    Markonian Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    And the German cover of "Heldentod" ('Hero's Death'):
    [​IMG]
     
  2. Enterpriserules

    Enterpriserules Commodore Commodore

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    ^ That is at least, a better cover
     
  3. Deranged Nasat

    Deranged Nasat Vice Admiral Admiral

    Seven looks ever so slightly shocked and very mildly disgusted by the Borg Cube, as though she can't believe that the resident unimatrix could be driving so recklessly.

    But it is a nice cover, yes.
     
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  4. Enterpriserules

    Enterpriserules Commodore Commodore

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    :guffaw:
     
  5. Technobuilder

    Technobuilder Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    They really should get the guy who does the German covers to come work on some of the Flagship releases.
     
  6. Elias Vaughn

    Elias Vaughn Captain Captain

    Command ordered Picard to do something, and Picard blatantly refused. It should have been Worf's duty to relieve Picard of command, but he didn't. It would then have fallen to Kadohata as second officer to relieve Picard of command and continue on the course Starfleet wanted them on.

    Picard's the hero so we as readers know that he's right and Starfleet is wrong, but from Kadohata's POV, Picard was disobeying orders for questionable reasons. IIRC, he didn't even really bother explaining why to her, and T'Lana at least had serious professional reservations about his ability to know what the Borg were up to.

    I don't think they should have been court-martialed, but Picard surely should not have let them remain on his ship. Hell, I think Spock should have been punished worse. He hacked the Enterprise before the mutiny even occurred!

    But I really didn't enjoy the book either.
     
  7. TheUsualSuspect

    TheUsualSuspect Lieutenant Commander Red Shirt

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    Clearly I've blocked a lot of the details out of my mind! (Although not the whole eating Pluto bit, sadly.)
     
  8. apollo1984

    apollo1984 Commander Red Shirt

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    I am about 50% of the way through the book and so far it is the weakest book post Nemesis so far, not plot wise but character wise, Worf was reduced to an angry animal (anybody who watched the latter series of TNG and DS9 would know that's not who he is any more.

    Kadohata who was introduced in Q&A could not stand the new security chief in the previous book but now it seems like she is all pally-pally, plus I could not tell if it was supposed to be sarcasm when she told the secuirty chief its a good job her husband did not find him in her quarters (but Q&A tells us that he is not even aboard the enterprise he is somewhere looking after her kids)

    Even the fact that the new Borg "absorb" stuff rather than assimilate people.

    I will read it as I am reading all post nemesis books but it is definitely below average in my mind.
     
  9. Christopher

    Christopher Writer Admiral

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    Well, that was specifically presented as a new adaptation. Personally I thought the faster, sleeker, scarier, smarter Borg of BD were a great improvement, the best idea in the book.
     
  10. apollo1984

    apollo1984 Commander Red Shirt

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    Maybe I am just too attached to Pluto
     
  11. tomswift2002

    tomswift2002 Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    I'm just glad that the book got rid of T'Lana. Sorry, but in the other TNG books that she was in she just did not do anything for me and I found that she really slowed the story down (and I don't think that she's appeared in any book since Before Dishonor. With her it almost felt like the editor's wanted to try to have a TOS/Enterprise setup with Picard having a Vulcan as part of his senior staff (which I'm not against), but I just found that the harder the authors tried to push her into the story, the more easily her character was popping out of place and was just not working.
     
  12. Markonian

    Markonian Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    In contrast, I enjoyed T'Lana. Pairing a captain with a Vulcan is not unique to TOS, we also had in VOY and the beginning of SCE.

    I remember when reading about her I thought she and Worf might get together.
     
  13. Jarvisimo

    Jarvisimo Captain Captain

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    She did appear in the third Destiny, but passed away.
     
  14. Sto-Vo-Kory

    Sto-Vo-Kory Fleet Captain Fleet Captain

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    A flawed book, but one that I enjoyed reading.

    Stylistically speaking, David is on point. The narrative momentum barrels through some of the crazier ideas, the dialogue is sharp and energetic, and the action was very cinematically staged. The prose carried me along on a pretty fun ride.

    The story itself was full of big ideas, some more successful than others. The bigger, faster, hungrier Borg were a more threatening foe, but I think they tipped over into ludicrous levels after munching on Pluto and the Sun. The planet killer vs. Borg fights were short-lived but highly entertaining. And old Spock certainly lives up to his reputation as a larger than life character in this novel, much to my delight.

    My favorite scene in the book is when Picard orders the helm to "set a course for home" and Jon Stephens (or Lady Q, if you prefer) asks, "Do you mean Earth or my home? Because I was born on the Martian colony..." After Picard clarifies Earth, Stephens asks at any particular speed "Warp one, two, three...?" and Picard fires back with Warp five. I love this moment because I can totally see Picard in a Trek movie issuing this exact order -- which is perfectly clear to the audience, but could be taken any number of ways by his crew.

    Anyone that's read a PAD Trek book knows to expect a certain level of irreverence and that expectation is certainly met here. Like the scene I described above, the author included little joke-y bits of business to deflate the conventional Big Moments in the story and that helped ease the tension in the narrative and lighten the tone, but it also went too far in some cases.

    For example, the death of Janeway was very poorly and tastelessly handled. Her death and its aftermath should have been a Big Moment, but it was casual to the point of flippancy.

    The mutiny plot was okay, but it came at the cost of losing all of the groundwork that KRAD laid in Q & A for Leybenzon and Kadohata. These characters were unrecognizable in this volume and the damage done to their likability is largely irrevocable. A regrettable misstep, IMO.

    T'Lana was a mess from her inception in Resistance so PAD gets a pass for her mangling here.

    For its place in the post-Nemesis continuity, Before Dishonor doesn't mesh well for me; but as a PAD novel, it was a wonderful popcorn movie of a story and I was sad to see it end.
     
  15. zarkon

    zarkon Captain Captain

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    He hadn't been sent krad's book, only resistance, so there was no way for him to build on the character growth in Q & A.
     
  16. Mage

    Mage Commodore Commodore

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    It's still Peter David writing a comic book instead of TrekLit.
     
  17. Defcon

    Defcon Rear Admiral Rear Admiral

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    No, it's Peter David writing a Star Trek book in the same style he has writen many before, which should have been well known to the editor.

    Either you don't hire him to write a book in an ongoing multi-author series or you reign him in more. It's that simple.

    If you're hellbend on condemning the book look at Clark, not David.
     
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  18. Mage

    Mage Commodore Commodore

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    I've read plenty of Peter David to find this book similair to what he has done in the past, but completely over the top. Like a comic book.
    For all we know, Clark had no choice but to release it, since something had to be for that slot in the season, but wasn't happy with it herself.

    I don't condem, nor am I hellbound. I just have an opinion, and that is that not Clark, but David wrote this. So in the end, the one responsible for this is the one who made it, not the one who authorized it.
     
  19. Idran

    Idran Commodore Premium Member

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    Editors are a lot more involved in the process than what you're presenting, though; it isn't just "hire an author, then choose to put out whatever they happen to write or not". They give notes, they guide the direction of the book, they tell the author when something's not working. At least, that's how things work in the best case, how they're supposed to work.
     
  20. Mage

    Mage Commodore Commodore

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    I know. And considering the amount of great novels we had under Clarck, I seriously doubt this was her doing. Considering the decline in New Frontier's quality (I'm not the only one who feels this way) and Before Dishonor, I'm more inclined to say that this was Peter's fault.
    At some point, that need to publish it, since there's a deadline to be made and costs have been made. It's that simple. So even if Clark might not aprove of the novel fully, it still needs to go, no matter how much she was guiding Peter with this.