This week, we’re taking a look at Carmen Carter’s debut Dreams of the Raven, which is in fact a Star Trek novel and not a Sting album (I double-checked). The Enterprise answers a distress call that turns out to be a trap, and the stress of both the resulting casualties and a letter that dredges up some unpleasant feelings drives McCoy to drink. Before you know it, Bones falls down and breaks his crown, and the ship comes tumbling after. Will Kirk get back his trusted friend and adviser? How will the junior medical officer who is a highly conspicuous stand-in for the author fare in his place? And will we see this book in our dreams, or will we put it back on the shelf and say “Nevermore”?
Today, Spock sings “Where Is My Mind?” while Kirk and Bones butt heads as they vie for the privilege of paging Doctor Love. Meanwhile, Kirk’s desire to help people in need proves at odds with the Aritanians’ desire for everyone to go away and leave them alone. Will Spock’s mental faculties come back in time to fill in the blanks for his befuddled, love-addled captain, or will he live out the rest of his days as a vegetable in his parents’ basement? This week, we shine a light on Mindshadow, or, How to Win Friends and Influence High-Ranking Starfleet Officers.
When you consider how protective (some might say possessive) today’s entertainment companies get regarding their intellectual properties, decades that can be at least semi-reasonably described as “recent” may start to look like an untamed hinterland. For instance, part of me often looks back with fondness on that roughly 15-year window where no one gave two figs about anything anyone did with Star Wars. As more and more properties come under the purview of fewer and fewer owners, it seems decreasingly likely that we will see cross-media appearances that are not planned down to the minutest legal, financial, and social media details, much less the reckless abandon of a product like Ishmael, a novel that so gleefully mixes in cameos and references from other properties that any legal team today would tear it to shreds before the first copy came off the presses.