Discussion in 'Trek Literature' started by Sho, Sep 16, 2012.
Shucks! What would satisfy you, sir?
Since I rated the book 'Above Average' and complimented some things that you clipped out, I'd say quite a bit satisfied me.
But the Super Mary Sue has gotten tiresome.
I don't has any advantage from catching another party off guard only lasts until the other party gets used to it,
Even then how exactly do they get an advantage against another party just by being different than usual?
Seems pretty obvious. Prevent their attempts at face-saving backroom deals from staying in the back room. That's exactly what they did to the Khitomer powers in Brinkmanship, albeit unintentionally.
Okay I'll give you that, but I don't see how that advantage wouldn't go away as the other powers got used to it.
Because the need of other powers to engage in face-saving backroom deals is going to continue so long as both sides use small powers like the Venette Convention as proxies in their cold war. Only if both sides make a specific effort not to drag the Convention into their diplomatic spats will that need disappear. (Assuming one side or the other doesn't win the overall Khitomer/Typhon cold war, of course.)
No I'm pretty sure its not just a Cold War thing seeing as countries still do that with the Cold War over.
And that doesn't really explain how this is some diplomatic game breaker. Hell the only reason that it seems to work in this instance is that the Federation forgot to point out that
Spoiler: Raise The Dawn
The Tzenkethi were involved in two plans to violate Dominion space and steal stuff from them, one of which involved them sneaking a station into Cardassian space which violated their sovereignty, which shows they can be hypocritical bastards when it suits them.
I doubt that will ever happen.
To be fair things were going well until the Tzenkethi decided to engage in their latest round of douche baggery, honestly I think Praetor Kamemor might want to yell at the Tzenkethi Autarch for going around trying to undermined every attempt that is make peace between the Khitomer Accord powers and the Typhon Pact members.
I'm just picturing a cat saying, "I don't has any advantage . . ."
I was referring to your thoughts on Ezri. She did not come accross that way to me in Una's book at all--throughout, she was internally conflicted, wondering whether the course of action she was about to take would be the right one.
With that in mind...I was wondering what Ezri would have to do for you not to consider her a "Super Mary Sue" or an "off-putting know-it-all".
You know I find it interesting that the Cardassian ability to be magnificent bastards has survived the change over to democracy.
I had to admit that I had a smile on my face when the extent of the Cardassian/Starfleet plot was revealed. The Tzenkethi might have been able to play the Venetan Convention like a fiddle but the Cardassians are definitely their match.
And Hartzilla2007 is right,the Tzenkethi are close to becoming a problem for the rest of the Pact with their constant manipulations the shiny gitwizards.
How on Earth, Prime or the Great Link did the Convention avoid being turned into a client state of the Union or absorbed into the Dominion during the war BTW?
Of course seeing as they were freaked out by the Federation not backing down and they ended up getting play by the Cardassians they may actually start toning the scheming down a little pit.
I guess we have to assume that the Dominion wasn't interested in them, at least at the time. The Convention is orderly and passive enough, and clearly no threat, so I guess it was left alone. Nor does it have much in the way of military power to be absorbed into the Dominion war machine. If there was a resource in the Convention that the Dominion needed for the war effort and couldn't find elsewhere, they'd have been in there instantly I'm sure, but evidently there was nothing they wanted. I'm sure that once the Dominion was victorious it would have sent a Vorta or six over to explain to the Venetans that they were part of the Dominion now, and to tidy up those chairs please, there's a good member state, but probably it wouldn't really pay them that much attention? Again, at least until it wanted something from their systems.
Pre-Dominion War, I'd assume the Cardassian Union never moved against the Venetan worlds because it might provoke the Tzenkethi. We know from the Terok Nor books that Cardassian/Tzenkethi relations were mistrustful and historically hostile; I'm guessing both sides recognized the Convention as a buffer zone. If one moved in, the other would feel provoked. And seeing that the people making up this buffer zone are no bother or threat, and apparently had no real interest in the outside galaxy, why not just call it good fortune and leave it be?
I wonder if the Venetans' apparent willingness to reach out to the Federation around 2370 was due to the truce between Cardassia and the UFP? Perhaps before then they ignored everyone, but with the Cardassian/Federation border suddenly a more peaceful and secure place than it had been for decades, perhaps there was a flood of trade and travel in the region, and the Venetans found themselves interacting with aliens more frequently. This might have coaxed them out a little? And by this point Cardassia had Maquis trouble and economic problems resulting from the withdrawal from Bajor sector, etc, so it probably wouldn't make the fuss it once might have made when it saw the UFP sending feelers to Venette?
Between this incident and the Kamemor backfire, it would seem the Tzenkethi are frequently underestimating the degree to which other races will avert (or at least threaten) the intended outcome of their scheming. That makes sense to me - the Tzenkethi have a structured society wherein everyone knows their place and functions as they're supposed to. The Tzenkethi leadership, for all their magnificent bastardry, are used to tidy manipulation of pieces that happily allow themselves to be manipulated. It's far too easy a game. When dealing with aliens, the combination of this expectation and general xenophobia seems to blind the Tzenkethi to the idea that everyone won't just fall into place as and when the Tzenkethi plot. The Tzenkethi are good, but they're just not used to game pieces that have their own agendas and might randomly wander off half way through the game - or worse, turn on them. They're going to over-extend their reach if they're not careful, and possibly alienate their fellow Pact members as well as the Khitomer powers...
It is interesting that when the Typhon Pact formed, it seemed as if the Romulans were the major power in the alliance but as time goes on, the Tzenkethi appear to be the real center of the alliance.
Thought people might be interested in this Q&A I did for the folks at the Priority One podcast; Q&A is after the review:
Thanks for the post Una! I am finishing my review for Trek.Fm but I will say that this book was great. There is a lot going on under the surface and I'll post the full review when I am done.
I'm quite far into the novel; I'm enjoying it more than I thought.
I was wondering if there is an explanation as to how a Human and a Cardassian can be cosmetically altered to look like a Tzenkethi, given that earlier books said Tzenkethi could twist their bodies in several directions and walk easily on ceilings?
Well, I think the ceiling-walking thing is due to Tzenkethi technology, specifically their ability to manipulate gravitational fields in order to utilize every available surface. A Human or a Cardassian would be able to walk on a Tzenkethi ceiling regardless of any cosmetic alterations or lack of same.
Just noticed Trekmovie have posted a review of the novel:
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