Re: Typhon Pact: Rough Beasts Of Empire review thread As far as the DS9 threads are concerned, part of the problem is that these characters have been stuck in "set-up mode" for a long time now, really since Unity. There were a bunch of novels that contained basically set-up material for the Ascendant Arc, which then never actually happened, and now the Typhon Pact contains a few elements of what is basically set-up material for whatever comes next. Overall, I get the feeling that no one really has any idea how the original relaunch was supposed to unfold, nor any idea what (if anything) is on the horizon for these characters, so the constant refrain that "something is about to happen" and "the sorrow is looming" and so on starts to be irritating rather than exciting. The next time someone tells a story involving these characters, something has to actually happen (by which I mean a complete action from a dramatic standpoint). Enough with the set-up and foreboding already. Spoiler: RBoE The Sisko story in RBoE boils down to a drawn out revelation that Sisko is leaving his wife and family due to an extremely dubious interpretation of the prophecy regarding his life with Kassidy. Now, looking here in my handbook entitled "Prophecy 101: The Basics," I see that attempting to circumvent a prophecy is commonly the best way of fulfilling that very same prophecy and, given Sisko's extreme depression throughout most of this novel, that seems to indeed be happening. But maybe due to his time in the Celestial Temple Benny has some kind of special insight into how things will unfold in the long run? Some nebulous references suggest this might be so. All of this might be mildly interesting if this were part 1 of the story, but actually that's the whole thing, i.e. there's no story at all really, since a decision like this is not interesting on its own, but only in light of how the character's interpretation/misinterpretation affects his life and those around him. Sending Oedipus away because it is foretold that he will kill his father and marry his mother is not interesting in itself, that's the set-up for what happens later. Sisko's decision has to have some unforeseen consequences or come back to bite him in some way for it to be interesting and feel complete from a dramatic point of view. Or, alternately, perhaps we are to believe that Sisko made the right choice and averted the "great sorrow" entirely, thereby saving Kassidy and/or his daughter. That's waaaaaayyyyyy too easy, and doesn't seem likely, but again, all of this is only interesting as a set-up, not as a complete narrative. In reality, the story is in suspended animation until some future author decides to pick it up again. However, given that these characters only show up once every couple of years, something has to actually happen for the reader to feel in the least bit satisfied. An introduction to the foreshadowing to the preface to the looming disaster to the continuing saga on the horizon vibe simply does not work given the current publishing schedule. In passing, Kira's appearance contains a humorous moment where the narrative pauses to basically state that Kira is a great character who has had a great journey and her journey is emblematic of Bajor's journey in many respects. Err, yes, all of that is true, but ideally a character like Kira would appear in a novel like this to continue the journey, rather than summarize what has come before in very general terms. Spoiler: RBoE In fairness, she does perform a meaningful function in drawing out a confession of Sisko's motives, but the bit about "what a great journey it's been to this point" should have been edited out as it only serves to underscore the reality that Kira is making a token appearance, nothing more, in the wake of that Ascendant thing that sort of happened (but not really).