This review is from: The Fall: The Poisoned Chalice (Star Trek) (Kindle Edition)
Even though star trek hasn't been this blatantly allegorical since shatner trod the decks of the original starship enterprise, this book is where on going plotlines start to come together. It's a decent mixture of action and detection, with familiar characters all having the right tone and voice (except perhaps occasionally Riker and Nog....but then a fully adult nog was never seen on television, and as much as a married Captain Riker was never seen, we now have Admiral Riker, and his even less familiar brother to contend with....so I think that works) I was especially pleased to see Tom Riker back in the fold, and this book itself shows the characters I grew up with addressing something of a problem I was beginning to have with trek in general....'this is not who we are'....the violence, the corruption...these things are not the ideals of the federation that many trend and are familiar with, and whilst it makes for good drama, things can only be so dark for so long. The other paths of the franchise (star trek online...the jj abrams shadow of the original series...) both seem a little lost in terms of how to get back to that positive heart, but here we see the novels hopefully begin the climb back from the difficulties that seem to face treks overall tone as modern American (and worldwide) fable and myth in a post 9/11 world. (It seems to be this that has made treks explorers into bloodied soldiers after all) and although in this November have covert operations, renditions, and corrupt power at the very heart of the federation....finally we get to see that our characters themselves have woken up and are addressing those issues within the fiction (no doubt to help encourage us in the real world, as the television series did, as well as to pull trek in at least it's literary form, back to somewhere less....grim...than it has been lately) and I am glad that it is Riker and his crew to so first. It seems fitting for the most diverse crew in Starfleet, and one of gene Roddenberry's avatar characters to make that change. (Rodenberrry certainly may not of always lived up to or even believed his own stated ideals, but Riker is doing the job his creator didn't in that regard)
I also enjoyed the tight character focus. I have loved some of the world building in star trek, but here we get to wander about with the people rather than the cultures. The only exception to this is the Roman colony commander, who I found very intriguing, if occasionally mildly grating with her odd speech patterns. There are many characters in this book who I wouldn't mind seeing again, and you can almost sense a new chapter with perhaps some new trek bridge families on the horizon.