This week brings enough environmental disaster to make Captain Planet’s head spin. Two planets, each in possession of something the other needs, must make nice before explosions both literal and figurative wipe them out. But the clock really starts ticking when an old man shows up to get the kids off his lawn—by any means necessary. Could Worf pull off a rugby shirt? How far is too far when it comes to embarrassing Wesley? What is a panty raid at Starfleet Academy like? It’s the book you can’t tell is pregnant.
(Hey there, readers, just a quick note prior to this review. Star Trek books rarely get too intense to merit content warnings, but there is a pretty brutal depiction of physical abuse in this book that is mentioned in this review. So, just a heads-up.)
This week, we return to one of the least revisited eras of Trek for a whodunit with the second-string team. An overbearing seductress causes problems for her daughter and her ex; the ship’s guests have a Gordian knot of ideas about harmony and balance and honor that need untangling; and a spy is sneaking around the ship trying to sabotage the negotiations. Why would Spock allow his captain to use a program he knows is unfinished? Have these people somehow not heard of shapeshifting? What is the Enterprise’s porn collection like? Does it actually have one? It’s the book that will at least have no trouble qualifying for the HOV lane.
This week, while Picard allows a mysterious beam to pull the Enterprise to its source to get to the bottom of some recent disappearances, the rest of the crew experiences a different kind of drag as Data goes around looking for critiques on the romance novel he’s writing. Meanwhile, a familiar face tries to find the best living situation for her young charge, while a mound of space crystals is racking up a hefty pile of bad Yelp reviews. Why did Geordi make the cover? When is having Tellarite vision a good thing? Who will be the one to break the bad news to Data? It’s the book that you have to darken the ports to properly appreciate.
This week, four authors of varying notoriety in Trekdom join forces to deliver a book that any given one of them honestly probably could have written just fine on their own. Geordi, Worf, and Data get dropped off on Kirlos to assist a former teacher of Geordi’s in an archaeological dig, but when their presence in the vicinity of two explosions makes everyone think they’re terrorists, the make-out plans Geordi barely knew he had go on indefinite hold. While the gold-tunic’d trio work to clear their names and prevent war, Picard mounts a rescue effort for another planet under attack and gets a shocking amount of guff for playing a hunch. Who wrote which parts? Are four heads better than one? Should you go through with ideas you have at parties? What’s going on underneath Kirlos? And how would you seduce Data? It’s the book that didn’t have enough in the budget for Tellarites.