Once you get over the initial very pleasing shock of SEVEN DISCS & EIGHT HOURS OF STORYLINE, and the initaly slight disappointment of a lack of sound effects you're on a roller coaster ride!
Alan Dean Foster is a veteran Star trek writer. He's made excellent use of the story which Roberto Orci and Alex Kurtzman wrote for JJ Abram's 2009 film, "Star Trek".
On a practical level there are chapters on each disc, so you don't have to "fast-forward" or "rewind" if you're trying to find a bit you missed!
The box set has 3 dividers and it's nicely packaged with a pleasing "Star Trek" logo, looking carefully you'll see the characters from the new film embedded into the letters!
It's a LONG LONG story. So we get more than the film shows us. But that's no problem. Of course we don't have the visuals, or the sound effects.
What we DO have however is a genuinely enjoyable book, read by someone who shows their great enthusiasm for the variety that in essence IS Star Trek.
So how has Zachary Quinto done? Well, his menacing chilling interpretation of the Romulan villain NERO is spot on! Sylar might need to look to his laurels.. We also hear the tender side of humanity as Uhura takes form in this recording. ZQ is capable of a wide range of voice control, emulating feminine voices without pantomime.
As for his interpretation of Dr Leonard "Bones" McCoy, that irascible Southern Gentleman's drawl certainly comes close to that of Karl Urban, who in turn is often second cousin to the late marvellous DeForest Kelley.
Zachary Quinto is well known as Sylar from Tim Kring's "Heroes". Of course he is the actor who plays the younger Spock in the film, and was the first actor JJ recruited. ZQ plays the younger version of Spock in the film, and continues his excellent portrayal of everyone's favourite Vulcan Science Officer [well, favourite to all apart from Nero, any number of Romulans, Klingons, etc etc ..].
Personally I'm not so sure of his "Older Spock" voice but then in my opinion nobody apart from Leonard Nimoy is Spock. However - he DOES do a pretty good job. It's logical - he spent quite a time with Leonard Nimoy on the film set and before.
At times the script bring hoots of laughter - especially where Scotty is around, and ZQ does a fair imitation of Scotland's finest Chief Engineer. Simon Pegg did have the edge but when ZQ intones in rich brogue: "I like this ship - it's exciting" it's a good echo of Pegg's nod to James [Scotty] Doohan, so sadly missed now.
As for his "James T Kirk", no, he's not a mini-Shatner, but he certainly shows the various emotions and conflicts of the character through careful voice changes and controls.
Captain Christopher Pike is indeed a senior, well-tried opfficer, and again Zachary Quinto expresses that well, tempered with concern for his crew and a particular new, very raw cadet in particular.
So all in all, the recording is good fun - I've listened to it on my commute to work this week and it's been great! I've got more of the "backstory" to the film and some things are explained more clearly than I expected.
So thanks to Alan Dean Foster for the words, Roberto Orci and Alex Kurtzman for the original script, JJ Abram's for his idea to renew this Enterprise, and to Zachary Quinto who exudes such enjoyment for Simon & Schuster's latest recording in the Star Trek series of tie-ins.
Live Long and Prosper [well, at least for 7 discs worth!]
Captain Cohen, Coventry, UK