Spoilers TNG: Pliable Truths by Dayton Ward - Review thread

Rate the Book

  • Outstanding

    Votes: 9 52.9%
  • Above Average

    Votes: 3 17.6%
  • Average

    Votes: 5 29.4%
  • Below Average

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Poor

    Votes: 0 0.0%

  • Total voters
    17

Enterpriserules

Commodore
Commodore
81nSrymCU1L._SL500_.jpg


A thrilling new Star Trek: The Next Generation and Deep Space Nine adventure from New York Times bestselling author Dayton Ward!
2369: Shortly after Starfleet thwarts a Cardassian attack on a Federation star system, the Cardassian government orders an end to its fifty-year occupation of the planet Bajor. As a result, a newly installed Bajoran government requests immediate assistance from the Federation to mediate how the withdrawal will proceed and what recompense, if any, Bajorans are owed from their brutal oppressors. Captain Jean-Luc Picard is ordered by Starfleet Command to oversee these tense negotiations on Terok Nor, the massive Cardassian space station still orbiting Bajor, even as he still deals with his own recent trauma as a prisoner held and tortured by a Cardassian interrogator.
As these critical peace talks get underway, Ensign Ro Larenreceives a call for help from a friend thought long dead, exposing an insidious secret from inside Cardassian space. Now, Picard and the crew of the Starship
Enterprise must act to prevent an interstellar incident from reigniting deadly hostilities between the Federation and the Cardassians, and shattering any hope of justice for the Bajoran people...
 
In typical Dayton Ward fashion, it reads like a student trying to get to the required word count for the teacher. Ward's trick to do that as usual is to find ways to summarize complete episodes of Trek related to the inner monologue/feelings of a person. So far we've gotten full synopses of "Ensign Ro", "best of both worlds," "I, Borg," "Inner Light," and "Chain of Command."

I'm only on Chapter 7, wonder how many more full episode recaps we will get moving forward.
 
I ordered this book I just hope it won't take a couple of months to get a copy of this book like Firewall.
 
I've been informed that mine has arrived. Along with a pack of check registers (which I go through rather quickly) and the LD Season 4 DVD set.

I generally try to avoid ordering books out of Amazon (preferring to visit my local B&N, or order out of Alibris), but my understanding is that Amazon currently has a monopoly on the LD season 4 DVD set, adding a pack of check registers (I really don't like the ones VistaPrint provides free with my checks) didn't put me over the threshold for free shipping, and I didn't actually need anything else out of Amazon that would have put me over the threshold.
 
@Enterpriserules , thanks for setting up the thread!

Just a couple of housekeeping notes:
  • To remain consistent and not mess up the rating aggregation page, I changed the top poll option from “Awesome” to “Outstanding”.
  • Since people may want to see the ratings to make decisions about whether they want to purchase/read the book, I’ve changed the poll so that you can see the results before voting.
 
To remain consistent and not mess up the rating aggregation page, I changed the top poll option from “Awesome” to “Outstanding”.
Oh, is that why polls seem to have recently gone from having subject-specific top and bottom options to hall having the same top and bottom options within a given section.
 
Oh, is that why polls seem to have recently gone from having subject-specific top and bottom options to hall having the same top and bottom options within a given section.

What I said was, as far as I know, only applicable to TrekLit. Ever since Sho set up his excellent TrekLit review thread aggregator, we have tried to keep the polls in the official TrekLit review threads consistent, so that they can get seamlessly included in the aggregator.

If you are referring to the episode review threads that Commander Richard sets up, then I honestly don't know why the change was made, or if there is an aggregator for them. That might be something that you would need to ask the good commander himself! :)
 
Opaka appearing contradicts Emissary. Kira tells Sisko that Opaka has secluded herself for a while before he arrives.
I haven't read the book yet so I don't know how she plays into it, but there's plenty of wiggle room for her to be involved.

Kira "...Leaders of all the factions have tried to get to her, but she lives in seclusion, rarely sees anyone."

Rarely sees anyone. Not never. :)
 
Is Mr. Ward padding his word count, or just rehashing past events as he tends to do.


Recounting. I get the whole treat the Book like its the readers first trek book, however Star Trek books are so niche, it'd better serve the story to just go and put a glossary at the end "for more information, check out the last 25 years of trek literature" section.

The best example of this I ever read was Indistinguishable From magic. The author just went for it and trust the reader to keep up.
 
however Star Trek books are so niche, it'd better serve the story to just go and put a glossary at the end "for more information, check out the last 25 years of trek literature" section.

No, that's never a good way to proceed. Any story should stand on its own; references to outside things should be optional, not mandatory. We want to welcome readers in with accessible entryways, not scare them off with hurdles they have to jump over.

Exposition is basic. Every story depends on information about its past that the audience doesn't have, whether it was in a previous story or just part of the characters' unseen history. Hamlet depends on Claudius's murder, which happened before it began. Casablanca depends on Rick and Ilsa's past relationship. Star Wars: A New Hope picks up in the middle of an ongoing conflict and fills in its history as it goes. All stories have to explain past events to some extent. The rules of exposition don't change if those events have been depicted in earlier stories.

Although in that case, it can be a challenge to give necessary exposition to unfamiliar readers without it seeming long-winded or redundant to those who already know it. But I think the basic principle is the same -- either way, you want to give the necessary backstory in a way that's entertaining, that doesn't drag the story to a halt for a long lecture, and that isn't laden with unnecessary detail. That's the same whether you're recapping past episodes of a TV show or expositing the worldbuilding you've done for your original universe. There's always a background, and you have to fill in as much of it as the story needs and no more.

For my part, when I reference past Trek episodes or movies, I always try to come at it from a fresher angle than just recapping the plot -- say, by telling it from the perspective of a different character, filling in unseen parts of the event while also working in the bits that are relevant, or having the character's interpretation of it be unusual in a way that reveals something about their personality. So even readers who know the events by heart will still get something new from the way I describe them. (Or sometimes, since I'm me, I offer a more credible scientific explanation for some bit of weirdness from the episode.)
 
I think that's one of your particular strengths Christopher; I always enjoy those moments in your books. I know so much of this all so well by now but you almost always succeed in getting me to think about it from a different angle, or deepen my understanding.
 
No, that's never a good way to proceed. Any story should stand on its own; references to outside things should be optional, not mandatory. We want to welcome readers in with accessible entryways, not scare them off with hurdles they have to jump over.

My own novel-in-progress (it concerns the adventures, musical and otherwise, of a child prodigy organist) makes a great many references to real-world events and real-world historic figures, and much of it hinges on the fact that unlike a piano or harpsichord, in which the "playing action," i.e., the mechanism by which the keys cause the strings to be struck or plucked, is more-or-less standard, organs can have any of several different kinds of actions (tracker, electropneumatic, &c) connecting the keys to the valves in the windchest, and they have different strengths and weaknesses. And my protagonist is learning all of this alongside the reader. And occasionally explaining it to other characters who would have no reason to already know about it.

But back to the opus in question, I've made it through to page 43. Aside from Nechayev seeming more than a little bit out-of-character (far too nice!), characters seem spot-on, and I'm really itching to know what's going on under the uridium mine on the "unnamed planet."
 
I haven't read the book yet so I don't know how she plays into it, but there's plenty of wiggle room for her to be involved.

Kira "...Leaders of all the factions have tried to get to her, but she lives in seclusion, rarely sees anyone."

Rarely sees anyone. Not never. :)

It wasn't the "Emissary" line that sprang to mind when I got to that bit, but this one from "Battle Lines":
BASHIR: You say she's never been [to the station] before?
SISKO: She's never even left Bajor before.

I'm listening to the audiobook and said aloud, "Argh, that's not right." It's not bad so far (though I don't think Picard and Nechayev were ever on first name terms) but this is the first sloppy thing that's taken me right out of it.
 
Last edited:
Back
Top