Monday, July 12, 2004

One of these years, I'm going to make it to the Shore Leave con in Baltimore. From what I hear it's the Trek con for Trek book fans. And Marco and the Pocket gang made quite a few announcements there this past weekend.

Here's a quick summary of the news, as extracted from a number of sources (listed and linked at the end):

TOS books

No new purely TOS books were announced, though the cover art for Christopher Bennett's forthcoming Ex Machina (which I am really looking forward to) was revealed. One book featuring Kirk and Scotty in the 24th century, Gene DeWeese's Engines of Destiny, was announced. Looks like I'll have to remove that one from the Lost Books page. Though I may wait until I actually have a copy in my hands...

TNG books

The post-Nemesis books begin with two untitled novels, one by Michael Jan Friedman and one by J.M. Dillard, following Picard and the Enterprise. Riker and the Titan will anchor a new book series (see below). There will also be a new Lost Era novel about Picard, set in the years between the loss of the Stargzer and the launching of the Enterprise-D (no author named as yet).

DS9 books

Some information was given on Worlds of Deep Space Nine Volume Three, but that was already scheduled. Sisko will appear in a Lost Era novel set during the Tzenkethi War, when Sisko served aboard the USS Okinawa (no author named as yet). As for new DS9 novels, Una McCormack is writing a sixth season novel following on from the events of the episode "In the Pale Moonlight." There will also be a four-book series called Terok Nor, set during the Cardassian occupation of Bajor, by author or authors unknown. Also, though no details were given, the DS9 relaunch will continue beyond the Worlds of Deep Space Nine books. (I'd be surprised if they didn't, personally.)

Voyager books

There will be a tenth anniversary Voyager short story anthology. There will also be a trilogy, set during the run of the series, with the working title String Theory, written by Jeffrey Lang, Kirsten Beyer, and Heather Jarman (one author per book). Set before the episode "Night," the trilogy is about the Caretaker's species.

Enterprise books

Dave Stern, author of the recent Daedalus two-parter, is writing a novel that centers on Hoshi Sato and the universal translator.

New series

Fans have been expecting a Titan series, and we're going to get one. The first book will be Taking Wing, by Andy Mangels and Michael A. Martin. Set after the TNG A Time to... novels and the movie Star Trek Nemesis, this is the beginning of a series of books following the adventures of Captain William Riker of the USS Titan.

Vanguard is a 23rd century space station-set series. The first, as-yet untitled novel will be by David Mack. Unlike Challenger and New Frontier, this will not be a single-author series.

The Split Infinities alternate universe project that has been discussed several times over the last few years may be renamed Other Times. Likely to be a single anthology rather than a series.


The Star Trek Fiction Companion will be something like the DS9 Companion, but for novels.



Yesterday I finished reading Lawrence Miles's first proper Faction Paradox novel, This Town Will Never Let Us Go. It's quite an experience. There's very little connection here to anything recognizably Doctor Who-derived. Instead, with its focus on the meaning of popular culture, life during wartime, and other issues, and its experimental prose, it reminded me of a number of other things. David Cronenberg's movie Videodrome, Theodore Roszak's novel Flicker, a few different New Wave SF books from the 1960s, Max Headroom, some of the postcyberpunk postmodern SF from the late 1980s and beyond.... In general, it's pretty far removed from the usual tie-in novel. I'm not certain that it achieves all it sets out to do. There's something almost quaintly historical now about its use of videotape as a major form of media transmission, instead of satellite newsgathering feeds, VCDs, DVDs, and Internet downloads, in a book that's commenting on modern celebrity culture. Still, that does lead to some remarkable imagery in the book. And who'd expect to find any kind of sociopolitical commentary on everything from the death of Princess Diana to the 9/11 terrorist attacks in a Doctor Who spinoff? For that matter, who'd expect the first Faction Paradox novel to build on so little of the content of The Book of the War?

(Now playing: The Cure, "The Caterpillar," The Top.)


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