September Books 5) Star Trek: Enterprise – The First Adventure

5) Star Trek: Enterprise – The First Adventure, by Vonda N. McIntyre

I’m not really a trekkie. I mean, if I come across a Trek episode – from any of the series – while channel surfing, I’ll probably stop and watch it to the end; I will even engage in half-informed debate about whether TNG, DS9, Voyager or the original series is best. And I have one or two favourite episodes. But I think I have read a grand total of three Star Trek books in my life – Gene Roddenberry’s novelisation of “Star Trek: The Motion Picture”, the James Blish “Star Trek 5” (in which I think “This Side of Paradise” is the best individual story), and David Gerrold’s heavily annotated script for “The Trouble With Tribbles”. So I’m not a real trekkie, though I can probably pass for one in mixed company.

Well, make that four Trek books as of yesterday; Vonda N. McIntyre’s 1986 speculation about how Kirk and Spock all got together (I bought it from a charity shop during the summer for something like 30p) was just enough, in my sleep deprived and slightly despondent condition yesterday, to prevent mind and body from completely separating on the flight from Brussels to Chișinău via Vienna. The actual plot is just a wee bit thin, but there’s enough characterisation to make it interesting – not only consistent with what I think I remember from the original series, but also working in new material in a way that seems to make it all more coherent. (I have made the same comment – weak plot, great characterisation – about her Hugo and Nebula winning novel Dreamsnake.) I don’t recommend that people seek this one out, but if you happen to see it lying around your local bookstall, it’s worth, oh, several times what I paid for it.